Probably not the smartest thing I’ve ever done…

…but it was fun.

My elbows have been painful all week, so it wasn’t the smartest thing to go paddling today. But I look some Alieve and vowed to concentrate on good technique and keeping my wrists relaxed. It probably helped. My elbows don’t feel much worse than they did before.

We got there around 6pm. The guy working there asked if we could be back by 7, because he had a birthday party to go to. I was a little reluctant, because normally we go for an hour and a half or more. But then he said “Oh wait, you guys are in the frequent paddler program, right? Ok, I’ll just leave the padlocks on the paddle and life jacket racks open, and you can just put everything away and lock up when you’re done.” Cool. It’s nice to be trusted.

As we were getting ready to leave, a woman left in her own fibreglas kayak. She looked like she knew what she was doing as she headed up stream. The thunderstorms of this weekend have raised the creek level and flushed out the stinky algae we encountered last week. It also meant we were facing a stronger than usual current.

I don’t know why, but it seems like practically nobody was on the creek today. We saw a few people, but we also saw plenty of turtles, swans and herons, more so than we usually see in an evening. Three quarters of the way up to the wier, that same woman we saw heading up was coming down, this time with two other women. She told us that the weir was nearly impassable. We got there and found she was absolutely right – there were trees blocking the non-passable parts of the weir that were forcing all the water through the middle part, and the middle part had an extremely strong current going through it.

Vicki held back while I tried it. I started very strong going up one side eddy, but as soon as I put the nose of the kayak into the stream I got pushed sideways and I also got rolled a bit. I should have been expecting that, but it’s been too long since I’ve done this sort of thing. The fact that I got surprised by it and nearly took on water in the cockpit made me decide to not do this – I didn’t want to swamp way the hell up the creek. If I’d had a spray skirt, I would have continued. But instead I just braced and ferried into the other eddie.

Vicki and I headed back, and it sure was fun going with the strong current. Vicki was really getting into it, and paddling much harder than usual. That suited me just fine, because it meant I could paddle closer to the speed I paddle when I’m alone, which is a more efficient and better exercise speed for me.

Even though we took the long way home, we got back just on 7pm, and the guy was closing up. We put our stuff away without his help, and he refused to take our money even though we used up our pre-paid rental hours. I guess we’ll get him next time. It’s nice to be trusted.

Man I wish my elbows didn’t hurt so much.

Pulling out the thermo-nuclear trump card

Our QA group works in the basement of this building. I work on the third floor. The only elevator is a freight elevator at the other end of the building, and I think you need your doctor to swear on a stack of bibles that you are legitimately handicapped before you can use it. Consequently, when the QA people need me to come down and look at a problem, I have to haul myself down this steep stairway in one of the danker and more industrial smelling parts of the building. I would like to I avoid it as much as possible. However, one of the QA people, Lisa, always calls me first whenever she has any problem, and she’s not very good at describing what the problem is, so I have to go down the stairs to see her. Unfortunately she’s very nice and pretty good at her job for the most part, so I can’t just tell her to fuck off.
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Damn damn damn FUCK FUCK FUCK!!!

This morning my elbows are hurting. And they’re not responding to ibuprohen either. This feels like the start of the two years of elbow pain that I got after trying for a week to paddle a canoe for exercise. I guess my plans to try a different kayak some evening this week had better go on-hold. Perhaps forever.

Dammit, why can’t I catch a break? All I want out of life is for something fun I can do that will give me some exercise so I don’t die of a heart attack when I’m 45. IS THAT TOO FUCKING MUCH TO ASK FOR, GOD?

Heavy Stuff, Don’t Read

I can’t decide which I hate worse – the atrocities done at Abu Ghraib prison, or the apologists who think that torture, including rape, can be excused.

Even the erstwhile “Lean Left” gets it awfully, awfully wrong, linking rape and threats of rape with homophobia and sexuality. Rape isn’t sex. It’s merely the most degrading and damaging thing you can do to another person. Worse, far worse than murder, or maiming or physical torture or psychological torture.

What is going to appear below the cut line is pretty heavy, you probably don’t want to read it.

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