March 2004 Archives


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I have been tired so i am a bit grumpy. And today I was pushed a bit to my limit. The GSH has a special nurse who certifies car seats. She came in and introduced herself and went with me to the parking lot to look at our car seat. Upon arriving at our vehicle she shook her head and told me our car seat was 7 years old and it was too old to be used. Car seats need to be no older than 6 years. What? So as of Jan. 1 my car seat is expired. However had I had a baby in December my car seat would have been ok. But now in March It is past it's due date. So if I want to be a safe and good father I need to haul my butt to the nearest store and fork over my money for a new car seat. How annoying. So I asked why my car seat is no good. Well it is because the plastic may be brittle. hunh? So i picked up my car seat and threw it against the macadem and it didn't break. So I am thinking it is still good.

Rough Start

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Well everything went as planned. We showed up at the hospital at 5am, got checked in, filled out all the paperwork and went into the O.R. by 7am. The doctors and the nurses were great. Some of them we have known for years and the others we very friendly. The thing Shelly was most concerned about was her spinal. The spinal she had gotten(from Dr. Kreider) when she had caleb was a nightmare and she didn't really want to repeat that. This time Shelly had Dr. Pityk He was a great anestegiologist(sp?) and the spinal went smoothly. Shelly's biggest worry went well.

The whole surgery moved quickly and by 7:39 Ruth was born. However once Ruth was out she was not breathing. Then Doctor Habecker immediately took her over to her own table and started working on her. I took a look at Dr. And the three other people working on Ruth and they looked concerned as they worked. They were tapping her and shaking her and sticking stuff down her throat and her nose pumping out liquid. They used a breathing bag on her and some other devices. I silently was starting to panic. I was praying hard and looking at Ruth and looking at Shelly. Shelly couldn't see anything due to the position she was in and I wasn't gonna tell her I was freaking out.

It had to be the longest two minutes of my recent memory. Watching the doctors trying to get Ruth breathing was scary. Finally Ruth let out a big cry and I immedialtey felt better. A few minutes later Dr. Habecker walked over to me and said, not sure what you are gonna name her, but perhaps you should name her 'Child that was too stubborn to breathe.' Glad Dr. Habecker could have a sense of humor about it.


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i will add more later.

click here


26/40 25m

and away we go

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Well it is 4:00am and I have already been up for 20 minutes. I showered and shaved and dressed and now I wait. At this stage in the game Shelly is trying an impossible task. She is attempting to get out of bed, get showered and dressed in under an hour. If she can do it, it is worthy of a gold medal.

I am a pro when it comes to 'getting ready to go'. I have got it down. Let's take church for example(with non-pregnant wife). If church starts at 10am I know in order to get to church on time we need to set the alarm for 8:40. At 8:40 when the alarm goes off I immediately hop out of bed and shelly rolls over. I go to the bathroom, weigh myself and hop in the shower. Shelly rubs her head and rolls over. I spend about 10 minutes in the shower. (Sorry, I know I probably leave the shower a bit dirtier then some of you. But 10 minutes is enough). After my first 5 minutes in the shower I call to shelly and ask if she is up. If I am lucky she rolls out of bed and makes her way to the bathroom by the time I am drying off. If not, after drying, I go tap her a few times. If I can get her in the shower by 8:55 I know she will be walking out of the house by 9:55 and we can be at church by 10. Her prep time to go anywhere(non-baby) is 1 hour from the time she steps foot into the shower. BTW, while she is in the shower I get dressed, wake the kids, get them dressed run downstairs feed them breakfast, make shelly toast and put it on a plate in the truck and comb hair, tie shoes, put coats on the kids, grab the bibles and get the in the truck and wait for her to come down the stairs.

However, since Shelly has been with child my time estimates have grown exponentially with every month into the pregnancy. It can easily mean that to get to church on time we now have to wake up when it is still dark outside. Now instead of having just enough time to get all the kids prepped I do all the things I did before and then we sit in the living room and watch a few tv shows before hopping in the truck.

So this morning my wife is trying to pull off a miracle. We need to be pulling out of our driveway at 4:45am and she is only hopping into the shower at 4am. 45 minutes? I haven't seen such a short prep time in years? will she make it? I hope. I want to see our baby today.

I will keep you posted eventually.


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Today we went to the hospital and got our blood work done for the c-section. Just another step in the process to check off. I am excited about the baby, but trying not to think about it too much cause then time just drags on. Monday we get to call and schedule our time.

BTW, we are still undecided about what baby name we will use. With all of our other children it was a done deal months in advance. Yesterday I found a cool little website that lists the popular first names of babies born since 1900.

Popular Baby Names

22/37 -28m 1st-15mmX2

Body Fat

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Well i did something today that I have been wondering about for weeks. I had my body fat measured. I have been looking into several machines that are available that are suppose to accurately measure your % of body fat. The one I finally found was actually right under my nose at the Y. The machine is made by Futrex and measures body fat thru infrared light.

Anyway I have long wanted to get a good report about my body fat because it would be a key to telling me what a normal weight for me will be.

So my body fat % is 28.6%, I have 185 of Lean(fat-free) weight. In other words according to this test my ideal body weight should be between 200-220 to be considered in fair-good health.

Before finding this machine I had done some searching on the internet and found some less accurate methods of testing, but they gave me a good idea of where I was at. The infrared machine just gave me a more accurate method and confirmed my other results within a few points.

Here are a few sites I found if you wanna try them out:

Waist vs. Weight %

More Measurements

Another one

home gym

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I purchased a home gym. nothing too fancy or expensive but just enough to do some weight lifting exercises. Anyway it was on back order last week with a promise of being available in 3 weeks. However today I got an email that it was shipped and would be here on Monday.

Why not the Y? I went to the YMCA and checked it out on a few free passes and even filled out the membership. Then i realized that the $35 a month plus the $50 sign up fee was gonna cost me money in the long run. So it was cheaper to buy something once instead of continually paying for it. So if I continue to work out for a year I could pay for my home gym.

So I found something i liked and saw that it was sold locally so I went to order it and they couldn't get one for 45 days. Well 45 days is too long to wait for me. So I searched online and found a place with free delivery(and a $50 savings over the local dealer) and they promised delivery in 20-30 days. So I was faced with a decision. What do i do for 20-30 days while i wait for my own exercise equipment?

Well i joined the Y on a per month basis(no joiners fee) and used the money I saved from the internet purchase of the gym to pay for a month of the Y. So I am going to the Y but not for long. My gym is coming next week.

The only thing that is an obstacle now is the delivery. It is due to arrive on Monday or Tuesday. And Tuesday is baby day and Monday we have to go the doctor, drop off some paperwork and get blood work done. So I wonder what will happen if it comes and we are not here? hrm.

20/31 -20m

another 10

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Well as of this morning it is official I passed through another 10 pound barrier. I have spent just about 6 weeks in the 260's. Today I am in the 250's. I want to say that this last 10lbs. have been the hardest 10lbs. so far. 6 weeks to loose ten pounds is no speed record. Come to think about it I lost 10 pounds in my first week. Seems unfair but I am sure that God is in control.

Concerning my goal. I had wanted to hit 250 by baby day. Well the baby is coming by March 30 and i will not be at 250. I will be close but not on target. I am cool with it. I am just happy to be loosing. Do I have a new goal? Maybe.
You know my motto(at least pertaining to playing board games). if you miss your goal(winning), just change your goal to something else you can acheive(like making sure someone else doesn't win.

close but no cigar

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Today we went to the OBGYN for what i thought was the last visit of our pregnancy. (C-section on 3/30) When the appointment was over he scheduled us for a visit next Monday. I cannot even tell you how much I wanted to cry when he said one more appointment. My brain took the word appointment and converted it for me into disappointment. I am tired of going to his office.

I realize the joy that will come out of this. I am excited for our new baby. I am tired of dragging myself to the Dr. weekly. one more time, one more time.


Cleaning House

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My wife has been on a cleaning kick. I think her nesting instincts have kicked in to over drive and she is cleaning the house top to bottom. Or in our case bottom to top. Everyday she picks a new room and cleans it. And we are talking about lifting furniture, scrubbing walls, shampooing carpet, dusting, organizing the whole nine yards. Some rooms have taken a few days, depending on the complexity. She has also taken the time to do all the seasonal clothing exchanges getting out warm weather clothing and putting away some of the winter wear.

The moment i finish work for the day I am drafted into helping. I get to do whatever she can not. Through this process I am amused at a few things.

1) Exactly how dirty a house can get.
2) How much dust can collect under or behind a piece of unmoved furniture.
3) The amount of energy my wife has to dedicate to this, considering her condition.
4) How quickly our kids can destroy our efforts.

Ok, enough for now. Gotta go clean.

Pro Hockey

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We went to a Hershey Bear Hockey Game tonight. I hadn't been to one in a decade. I used to go to hockey games at least once or twice a year when i was younger. What caught my attention at the game was the amount of intentional violence and the fans reactions to a fight.

In the first ten seconds of the game there was a fight. Two players circled each other for about 5 minutes un-interrupted by the refs and cheered on by the crowd. (I hadn't seen so much choreographed dancing since the olympics.) The fight continued until one guy was flat on the ice and the other guy was on top of him. The fans were in a frenzy over this display of needless violence. After play started again 5 seconds later a second fight broke out. So fifteen seconds into the game 2 fights? over what? nothing had happened?

After the first period they interviewed a player and one of the questions was about the fights. The player basically stated that he thought that the fights sent a message to the other team that Hershey was serious. What a lousy excuse. What a stupid message. The game and the fights soured me to Ice Hockey as a sport. Was I blind to this violence as a teen? Or is it worse now? not sure.

My wife's cousin loves two sports, professional wrestling and ice hockey. I used to think they were different. I do not anymore.


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Grunt Monkey

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I have never been and hope to never be a grunt monkey.

Went to the gym today to lift weights. Today I did 'upper body' in which i possess no strength. I have pretty strong legs but my arms and chest are silly putty. So as I worked out in came two gym jocks/grunt monkeys. They started their work out on the machine next to me. They were talking to each other hyping each other up and challenging each other to do more. "you gonna do super-sets today?" "Oh. super-sets I thought we were gonna do endurance today and not intensity!" The conversation continued.

They would push themselves to the limit with each set and making sure everyone in the room new they were working hurt the would grunt and groan. If I did that I would die of embarrassment. Such sounds were meant to be made in private and not shared with he world. I can only hope our paths do not cross frequently.

I might be a gorilla but I am not a grunt monkey.

Elsie part 2

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Well this morning we took Elsie to the doctor. Despite Elsie's nerves and our expectations for the worse, things went well. The doctor saw no need to align her broken bones. HE said the were only off by about 20 degrees and that God had designed our bodies as children to mend and align themselves over time. So wether he set the bones or not in six months an x-ray of Elsie's arm would look exactly the same. Sounded good to me. I am sure the doctor was thankful too.

He opted to give her a splint for 3 weeks and then a hard cast for 3 weeks. Saying the splint would accommodate swelling much better. While splinting Elsie she freaked and started kicking her legs and almost kicked the doctor in the head. Needless to say I held her down till the ordeal was over.

Now that the splint is in place she is much happier.


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Last night Elsie, my oldest(7) fell backwards out of our playhouse in the backyard. She fractured he right forearm breaking both bones. Caleb was with her and came running into the house to tell me she fell. I looked out and saw a familiar sight, Elsie walking toward the house crying and holding her arm. I was concerned but not alarmed and waited for her on the deck. As she got closer i looked at her arm and saw it had an 's' curve in it near the wrist. That got my attention.

I walked into the house quickly called shelly and told her to get ready to go to the hospital and then went back out to Elsie. She was distressed and in pain, i didn't feel like i could hug her or touch her much cause she was in pain. We ran off to the hospital for x-rays and treatment. They put her in a splint and sent her home with instructions to see an orthopedic surgeon in the morning.
They also gave her a script for pain meds which we were glad for.

This morning we called the orthopedic doctor. The nurse that answered the phone was a bit abrupt and told me that the doctor couldn't see Elsie till tomorrow. How could they not see my daughter till tomorrow? She is in pain and hurting and now she has to wait a day? This didn't make sense to me. But I trust that things will be ok.

Body for Me

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Well here is deal. I have been struggling for the last 3-4 weeks. My weight loss had slowed to a screeching halt. I had continued to loose fractions of a pound a week. But nothing close the the 2.5lbs I have been used to in the past. So this has caused a ton of self inspection and second guessing. Is this a plateau? or have I allowed my eating habits to become sloppy?

The answer is: it is a plateau. I have remained faithful to my diet every day since day one.('cept for my one planned hour of departure Jan 1.) So what is a man to do? I have been reading weight plateau web sites numerous suggestions on how to break the plateau. The popular ones are: 1). WAIT, weight loss will occur again, don't give up. That is easy in theory but hard in practice. No one likes to work hard at anything and see NO results. Day after day passes and no results. This is frustrating but it is part of my life for now. 2) Switch diets, if you are doing low-carb switch to low-fat, etc. This is supposed to shock your body and your metabolism into submission. Hard psychologically to do the opposite of something you have been training yourself to do for months. 3). Exercise more. Yeah baby! lets get sweaty! 4). Eat more. Tricking your metabolism into gearing up by raising food intake. This one seems a bit illogical. However I upped my calories by 300 a day. 5). take herbs or drugs to stimulate your metabolism. Sounds a little phen phen to me.

So what do you do? I have been waiting, and I must admit I am impatient. In the last month I lost a pound or two so I didn't stop loosing altogether but I have slowed to a crawl. So if it doesn't work change it. right? Well that is harder to say than do.

So when I got my iPod back I started listening to audio books. I had collected a bunch of audio book a year or two ago and have been waiting for an iPod so I could listen to them. (my other mp3 player broke) So in trying to decide what book to listen to from my collection I came across Body for Life. Body for Life is a Lifestyle changing, Low-Fat, Muscle building Program developed by Bill Phillips. I thought it would be interesting to hear what Bill had to say about my body so I plugged his book into my iPod and went to town. Big Mistake.

Talk about confusion. I really liked what Bill had to say and he made just as much sense as Dr. Atkins. But their approaches are different and similar. Kind of a ying-yang thing. They both believe in exercise and that when you eat carbs you need to eat nutrient dense low glycemic carbs. But Bill will tell you to keep your fats to less than 20% of your daily intake and Atkins will tell you fats are fine.

So what is a man to do. One of the ways to break a plateau is to switch diets, so do I abandon Atkins? Atkins has been my friend for months and has helped me do things no one else could, how could I give up on a good friend? However Bill promises new found weight loss and the building of some lean body mass to burn more calories. I like them both. Not to bore with all the details but I have spent hours upon hours thinking through this thing and have consulted a few friends on their opinions. So i decided to stay on Atkins for now but to use the Excercise training and suggestions from Body for Life. I also have started taking a LowCarb Protein Shake that BFL recommends (Myoplex CS). I have cut fatty red meats and I am sticking more to fish and chicken, also according to BFL. But I am sticking to counting carbs according toAtkins. I call my new Atkins/BFL program Body for Me.

So is Body for Me the answer? I lost 2lbs this weekend. First time in a month I saw a drop in weight that fast. Will it continue to work? We shall see.


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We visited our old church today. We hadn't been there since we left 8 years ago. We have seen everyone from church since then. We just haven't been back to church. Guess cause we are too busy with our new church to visit other places. It was good to be there. Good to remember. Good to see everyone at one time. We had specifically gone to our old church cause our friend Doug Gibson was home from Mexico and was the guest speaker.

Anyway it was nice to visit. And it was weird passing an offering plate, singing out of books, seeing all the teenagers sit in the back of the church and dressing up. Things that don't happen in our church.

It was also interesting to note how various people dealt with seeing me and my weightloss. Some people addresses me directly and others said nothing to me and spoke to my wife instead. Very interesting. :)

Not sure when we will ever get back to Annville again but visiting was nice and I hope sometime in the future we will go again.


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I put my dress shoes on today. I rarely wear them. I have owned them for years. Today I put them on and they were loose. My shoes have never been loose and they were on the tight side for the last year or two. But since I only wear my dress shoes a few hours a year I have just put up with their tightness. Well now to my dismay they are loose. I hate walking around in loose fitting shoes. My feet sliding back and forth with each stride. Once again I find myself wishing my feet could remain fat and I could loose weight elsewhere.

On the Fence

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So I have been struggling. I have been sitting on the fence for days, weeks. Which side will I fall on? What will I do? I wish I knew.


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Sometimes but not often I do what is right. Tonight was one of those times. Ever since our peer ministry chose the name Aquiline I have felt a nudge in my heart to speak about it. [Aquiline--means eagle like. And the supporting bible verse is Is. 40:30-31] So a month ago I started writing out my lesson, but due to sickness, interruptions, The Passion Movie, & other speakers I have been lazy in getting around to teaching.

Finally on Sunday I told Ray & Brian that I would be teaching tonight. And I did. I have no idea how I was perceived and if my presentation was any good. But after I was done I just felt right about life. I felt used by God. Don't know how to explain it, but I felt like I spoke and did what I felt prompted to do and when I was done, I felt like God said thanks you did what I wanted. It is a good feeling that I wish I had more often.

On a side note: not sure how pastors deal with speaking every week to a few hundred. For me it is a hard job to look into the faces of 50 kids and speak much less their parents. I really wonder what i look like sitting in my chair on a Sunday Morning. Do I roll my eyes, pick my nose, furrow my brow, talk to the person next to me? I wonder how often I am listening? I am often bothered by distractions from people around me. [the kid for lack of a tissue that wipes his nose on his shirt, the girl who write in her journal, the woman who coughs, the man whispers to his wife] I don't know how a speaker can do it with a few hundred distractions. It must be the by grace of God. So come Sunday I hope to be more conscious about the message I am sending back to the speaker. My goal is to be positive. I think that is what I would want.


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I am standing on the edge of the cliff waiting to jump. I am looking at the pool of water and I want to dive in. I am teetering on the tightrope and a circus tent full of people are gasping and pointing as I cross the abyss. More later. . .


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Well my iPod is back. Not the same one I had to begin with. Brand new from Apple. Shipped Directly from Taipei. It left Taipei at 3:51pm Saturday and was in my lap before 10:30am this morning. Fed Ex is an amazing company and for that matter so is Apple.

Currently loading my 2321 songs back onto iPod for starters. Life is good.

New England

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Well tonight it is finished. I have now finally played all my new games I got for Christmas. I was pretty blessed. For Christmas I got Bang, New England, Domaine, Mystery of the Abbey & Pirates Cove. So last night Lyle & Dave came over and we played New England for the first time. It was a good game. Not as involved as i thought it was gonna be. Actually out of all my games it falls in the middle of the pack as far as the amount of things going on in the game. My impression is that it is just a bit less involved that plain Settlers and no where near Puerto Rico.

So did I like playing the game? It was OK. I give it a 6 on a scale form 1-10(10=best). As with any new game it needs played a few times to get everyone up to speed. Then perhaps I will up my rating. I think there are a few games out there with about the same action and skill levels that meet my game needs in the same way. Just not sure if New England is the best of them.

So how would I rank all my new games since I played them? From favorite to least? Glad you asked.

1. Domaine- Best game of my Christmas Gifts. Reminds me of Multiple player chess with less rules to remember.
2. Pirates Cove- Just enough luck and skill. And who doesn't like rolling the dice and blowing someone's ship up?
3. New England- Jury still out, I need to play it a few more times.
4. Mystery of the Abbey-A new clue. This will be the first game I play with my kids that isn't Sorry or Candy Lane. Elsie already played once or twice and is getting the hang of it. Not a game to be played every day but fun none the less.
5. Bang-I have played this game several times. I enjoy it with 7 players. The fewer the players the less I enjoy it. So this is a game if you have a small crowd.

Perhaps I will take time out to further this favorites list to include all my games and the games I have played. And perhaps I can challenge Lyle to post a similar list on his blog and we can compare rankings and thoughts. I would challenge some of my other game playing friends to do the same. But alas, they are just voyeuristic in their blogging.

Peer Ministry

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It dawned on me on Sunday Night that I do not want to be a youth minister incharge of a youth ministry. I want to relabel myself. I think what we need to be doing is involving ourselves in Peer Ministry. This is really the core of Youth Ministry. Equipping kids with the tools and skills to reach out to their friends is the way to go. So why call it youth ministry?


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Hey, Hey my gout is back. Awful stupid pain in my left foot. Hurts to walk and the pain is starting to just hurt me sitting around. I have meds to take to take but they nearly knock me out. My head gets fuzzy and eventually I fall asleep. So what stinks is having pain in the morning, I just want it to go away. But the meds make me sleep. I got work I need to get done. So i will bare the pain until I get my work done, then I will take my meds and drift away.

Exercise Wishes

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I have to admit that for a period of 2 weeks I stopped doing my Denise Austin Aerobics. Perhaps it is because after two and a half months I still do not like them very much. The good news is I started again, today is day number 4. If I had some extra money, or I could have three wishes for things I think that would make my exercise life easier/better.

Wish #1 I would wish for a good exercise walking machine/tread mill. I really like to walk, it is good exercise. I would walk outside but during the winter I get asthma in cold weather and in the spring and the fall I have allergies. So even though I really enjoy walking, outside is not always the place to do it. I had walked for awhile at the local mall before they tore it down and I had walked for a month at Walmart. Walmart is big enough to walk around and is climate controlled but there really are too may people trying to shop that it become dangerous for them and me. So wish #1 would be for a 'good' walking machine, I would just buy a cheapo but my fear is that still being a pretty big and bulky guy I need one that is built to take a beating.

Wish #2 would be for a better weight set. Currently I have a few dumbbells and a bench which are working for me. But I desire something more. Perhaps more of a machine. Some sort of universal strength training machine that would let me do a bunch of weight exercises.

Wish #3 would be the big one, I would like a heated swimming pool. 50% cause I like to swim and believe it would be a good excuse to exercise for me and my whole family and 50% it is something that my wife desires too(more than me). I view the swimming pool as a chance to give our whole family a chance to be active and exercise together. My kids love the water and all have had swimming lessons so it would be an ideal choice for everyone.

Sadly, for the near future all these dreams need to remain dreams. With baby number four only a few days away there are other concerns and obligations we have for our money. So they will reaming dreams and wishes for the future. And for now I can build character by doing my aerobics.

Used Shorts

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Well I never liked used clothing. Being the oldest and only boy in my family I never had to deal with hand-me-downs. And also because I was a big boy most of the clothing people might have given to me wouldn't have fit me and were given to someone else. So I have gotten along fine for 33 years without having to wear used clothing.

Well a few days ago a friend called and asked me if I would be interested in some of his 'old' clothes. He started going to the gym and dropped some weight and a pant size and was wondering if I needed any smaller pants.

The answer was YES. I have been in great need of some pants that wouldn't be so baggy and fall off my butt. So to make a long story short. I went over last night and picked up a few pair of shorts and jeans. Currently I am a 38x30 and all the jeans fit perfect. While not all new looking, I now have some pants to get me through the next couple of months. And most importantly a few pair of jean shorts(my favorite summer clothing item).

This has also given me an idea. I need to find some people who might be size 36 or 38. I need to either persuade them to loose some weight or secretly fatten them up. Either way if they loose or gain they will have to get new clothes and can pass some my way.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from March 2004 listed from newest to oldest.

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