Random Thoughts from a Restless Mind

Dr. Darrell White's Personal Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘dementia’

Sunday musings 2/22/15

Sunday musingsā€¦

1) Hooptie. A comically old and partially functional vehicle. Totally new word for me, much to the amusement of some of my co-workers.

Especially since this describes my daily driver to a ‘T’.

2) 0.31%. The percentage of Americans who do CrossFit. ~5%: the percentage of Americans who are regular gym goers. That’s an awful lot of Americans exercising and not doing CrossFit, let alone Americans not exercising at all. Seems like a target-rich environment, no? If we simply increase the percentage of gym goers to 10% that doubles the number of CrossFit gym members, and it’s still only 0.62%.

Tell me again why there is so much strum und drang about competition between local CrossFit Affiliates?

3) Tuba. “The tragedy of the unhappy tuba player.” –Ben Bergeron

We are blessed in the CrossFit community by the presence of many, many fine speakers. Indeed, every Flowmaster at CrossFit Level 1 trainer seminars is a polished speaker able to tell a tale while effectively transferring their message. It goes without saying that Coach and all of the original SME’s are somewhere way into the stratosphere of excellence.

Beth and I attended a seminar at CFNE yesterday where we spent the ay with Ben Bergeron. That, my friends, was some treat! It wasn’t enough just to point out the importance of moving from a macro to a micro view while leading a class. Not even enough to liken the views to watching a great marching band perform. Nope, the description and example was nearly poetic:

“From the stands you watch a band in full bloom, moving as one, the epitome of applied excellence. The macro view; your class from the front of the room. You want to reach out to congratulate the bandleader. Then you zoom in on individual players and you come across a disheveled tuba player who isn’t playing at all. Indeed, his mouth is not even connected to his instrument as he trudges along a quarter beat off, tears streaming down his face. The micro view as you walk among your athletes.”

No chance I’ll be forgetting macro/micro after that! Kudos and thanks to Ben for hosting us.

3) Belfry. The mind is a wild, mostly wonderful, occasionally wacky place. The more I learn about how our minds work, the connections, neuroplasticity and all, the more mysterious it becomes. Beth and I are visiting my Dad, two parts of a team filling in for my Mom, front row seats to watch a mind careen between what is and what is not. As frightening as it is to be a passenger on this journey it must be simply terrifying to be driving the bus.

The science I get. Bad plumbing results in insufficient O2, not enough fuel over a lifetime, and delicate circuitry is lost. Or sludge of some sort builds up in a critical part of the wiring. Insufficient flow becomes no flow, and thoughts become trapped, diverted, or even worse, stillborn. Juliane Moore may win an Oscar tonight portraying a woman so afflicted. I’ve not seen the movie and most likely won’t; it just cuts too close to the bone.

Tragically, some of this is unavoidable at this point in time. We know not why certain types of age-related diseases rob us of our memories, our faculties, and in time our very selves. Ms. Moore portrays a character who is ambushed this way. Others, like my Dad, suffer from a version that likely results in part from self-inflicted trauma of a sorts. Smoking. Diabetes resulting from nutrition and inactivity. Use or abuse of mind-altering substances, most commonly alcohol. The mind is a terrible thing to which you lay waste.

What is there to do? Well, for me, for Beth, for my siblings and for any of you who may find yourself in similar straits there is little left but to apply the lessons of kindness, understanding, and empathy I have shared here and elsewhere. That and to have handy a healthy supply of tissues, for there is no balm to sooth these wounds for us or for my Dad. For those of us who do CrossFit we have already been given a prescription in 100 concise and precise words that is so far the most likely preventative medicine known to mankind:

“Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat.

Practice and train major lifts: Deadlift, clean, squat, presses, C&J, and snatch. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climb, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstand, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds. Bike, run, swim, row, etc, hard and fast.

Five or six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. Keep workouts short and intense.

Regularly learn and play new sports.”

I’ll see you next week…

Posted by bingo at February 22, 2015 8:28 AM

Sunday musings 6/1/14

Sunday musingsā€¦

1) Triple Crown. Admit it, you really want to see one won next week.

2) Black Hole. Games.CrossFit.com. Seriously. Where did yesterday go?

3) False dichotomy. Kinda like a forced-choice testing paradigm where you’re always wrong.

4) Rich. “The rich are different from the rest of us.” F. Scott Fitzgerald. Perhaps. But what I find fascinating, time and again, is how much the rich and the not-so-rich have in common.

Just take away some something that is truly meaningful that can’t be bought. We’re all the same, then.

5) Impending. I am 54 years old, Mrs. bingo soon to be 53. We are as in the middle as we could possibly be, the filling in the so-called “sandwich generation”. It’s the opposite of what my sage friend Hari once told me about turning 50, that the first 50 years of my life were about preparing and the next 50 were about me. And Mrs. bingo. Yet here we sit, squarely in the middle of lives in “launch” mode, and lives at the limit. So which is it? All about us, or squeezed in the sandwich from both ends of the life line?

Now THAT’S a dichotomy, false or otherwise.

You know, the bingo progeny are going to do just fine. My left-brain knows that; the right-brain angst is probably just separation anxiety. “The Heir”, “Lovely Daughter”, and “Lil’bingo” are all launched, and what their trajectories may be is largely (and appropriately) mostly out of our control, angst be damned. We may have lost the pleasure of their physical company at the dinner table, but we’ve hardly lost them otherwise. The cyber-kitchen table easily extends to each of their abodes.

The real loss to come, the loss of our own parents, is really what makes the “sandwich” so difficult. This stage has always been a participatory sport, and the final score is always the same. It may not even be any different from generations past other than the fact that we have a catchy name for our part now, “sandwich generation”. Most of us do not have our parents in our homes, so the decline we observe is all the more jarring because we see it in “jumps” rather than as a slow slide. As Baby Boomers we probably spend much more time thinking about how this all impacts US than prior generations–we could be called the “Navel-Gazing Generation, after all. In a funny way this actually gives our own parents one more opportunity to parent us by disabusing us of that rather selfish notion.

Memory is the issue for both parent and child. Happy memories bring joy and sadness, pulled to the front of our consciousness as both balm for the pain of loss and fuel for the work it takes to get through a day. Memory fades from the middle out, again for both parent and child. The toil of mid-life and the tyranny of teenagers fades as all that remains is the memory of the simplicity of early childhood joy, and the simple joy of remembering lunch.

We are in the middle of the Long Goodbye. We know not exactly when it began, and we know not how long is will last. We cling to our memories of life before as we fight not to remember life now. Mother’s Day is just past. Another Father’s Day is nigh. We steel ourselves for the time when they will be just another day, one on which we have nothing to visit but memories.

It seems that we are preparing, still, now and always.

I’ll see you next week…

Posted by bingo at June 1, 2014 6:53 AM