Archive for December, 2006

The Captain Welcomes You To His Year

Days Until I Am Married:  286

Starting Weight: 189 pounds

Today is the last day of the 2006 and the first day of the Year of the Captain.  The last part of 2006 has been quite busy.  In the last few months, I have spent a week under the weather with a head cold, spent five days at Disney World, mailed off 30+ X-mas packages, and watched my hometown team win the World Series.

The one thing I haven’t been able to do is find time to get back in shape.  I’ve been slowly losing weight in Florida due to the active lifestyle that is prevalent around these parts.  I’m down almost ten pounds since I first moved down, but I’ve got a long way to go.  I’ve been stuck in that awkward stage where most of my pants do not currently fit, but I do not want to go and buy a new wardrobe.  I am determined to be fit for the wedding, and this past week has seen me start to prepare for this undertaking.  I will officially begin on January 2nd, and until then I will try and avoid the typical “one last junk food binge” approach of years past.  Well, enough talk about what I plan on doing, on to what I have been doing.

This past week was actually quite enjoyable.  The office was a ghost town, the weather was quite tropical, and my excitement level was through the roof.  I waited all week long for my first opportunity to take a boat out into the bay.  On the 22nd of this month I became a partial boat owner, and yesterday was the first day I was able to enjoy my newfound nautical status.

I guess some explanation is needed on what the hell I am talking about.

I purchased a membership to the Freedom Boat Club.  It is very similar to purchasing a membership to a country club.  The membership allows me full use of 10 different boats docked at a marina near my home.  All I do is reserve a boat, show up, take the boat out wherever I want, and dock the boat at the marina when I am finished.  The only thing I have to pay for is the gas that I use.  It’s basically like owning a boat, but I don’t have to do any of the work involved with owning a boat.

I have been interested in joining the Freedom Boat Club for several months now, but the cost of a membership was way more than I could afford.  Luckily, I happened to find a listing on Craigslist of a guy here in Sarasota who was selling his membership at a steep discount.  I contacted him as soon as I saw the listing, and purchased the membership from him the next day.

Since then my quality of life has been rising rapidly.  I spent five hours on Thursday learning how to operate a boat in the bay.  I have previously driven boats, but all my boating experience was on lakes in Missouri.  As I discovered, driving a boat in Florida is much more challenging.  First and foremost, waves make operating any boat a challenge.  Second, most of the bays around here are surrounded with extremely shallow water.  Third, the waterways are quite crowded down here with everything from jet-skis to boats and yachts, half of which are operated by drunken rednecks.  While all of this is a challenge, it’s also a lot of fun.  I am eagerly looking forward to becoming an actual Captain.

The marina has three types of boats to use, basic fishing boats, faster deck boats, and party pontoons.  Yesterday, Megan and I took out a pontoon boat for the afternoon with three other couples that we have been hanging out with a lot lately. We had a fantastic time; it was sunny in the 80’s yesterday!  Of course I insisted that everyone refer to me as Captain.  Sarasota bay is absolutely beautiful, and it’s full of multi-million dollar mansions.  After being out on the water all day, we went back to my buddy Patrick’s place to continue the party.  We are actually meeting these three couple later tonite to celebrate New Year’s Eve.  We’re all meeting at our building and walking downtown to the bar district.  I’m so stoked that no one has to drive for New Years Eve!

So with that, the Year of the Captain has begun.  While the next 286 days will involve many different things, it will always involve exercising during the week and boating on the weekends.  Tonite while everyone is saying their goodbyes to 2006, I will be celebrating the beginning of the Year of the Captain.  Cheers!

Ciao,

The Captain

The Captains Year – Preamble

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Preamble – United States Constitution

What I am about to write is more important than the Constitution.

Preamble – Year of the Captain

So I’m sitting by myself on Christmas Eve eating a salad in a air-conditioned high-rise condo by the bay and it occurred to me how strange that would sound if I wrote that down.  Reading what I just wrote seems even stranger, especially since the sentence is short one letter “n”.  Separated, the strange parts of the first sentence do not seem that strange.  I’ve spent several holidays by myself, I had a salad yesterday, and I have been living in this condo for the past six months.  Those three thoughts in the same sentence seem rather odd.

During the last day and a half of chosen solitude, most of my thoughts have been of the typical end-of-year-reflection variety. During my beachwalk this morning, my thoughts became very focused on the upcoming year.  I decided that instead of reminiscing, I need to focus on the year ahead.  I need to face forward and open my eyes.  It is in that spirit that I am writing.

The Year of the Captain is upon us.  2007 looks to the biggest year in my 28+ years on the planet thus far.  Next year will be full of momentous occasions.  Like my grandmother’s five sons, I will be getting married in my twenties, albeit the latter half.  This will involve seeing almost everyone I have ever known closely with a 72 hour period.  I will be traveling abroad for the first time to celebrate my marriage to Megan and I will be traveling to Las Vegas to say goodbye to numerous things, including my bachelorhood.  Finally, after years of anticipation I will be spending my spare time learning to navigate a boat on the ocean.  2007 will be the Year of the Captain.

In order to prepare for the upcoming year I need to focus.  Instead of jotting down a list on a scrap piece of paper, I have decided to write out my thoughts in order to start making this process a part of my routine.  Writing will be one of the many disciplines that will be necessary in order to get me to where I am headed.  In order to make it by the time September rolls around, I will need to adopt a more disciplined lifestyle in order to achieve my goal.  Since when did I get goals you may ask?  Well, I don’t have them yet asshole.

My main goal starts January 1st, and it is to get into shape for the wedding.  This will involve me routinely exercising and keep an exercise journal complete with weekly weigh-in.  This will involve eating healthy consistently.  Most of all it will involve me increasing my daily focus.  In the past I have kept journals to help me focus in times of need.  I will be adopting this journalistic approach again, but this time I will be sharing it with whoever is interested.  Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, my journal will be a modern interactive communication.

If you have read the previous five paragraphs and are still with me, congratulations.  If you just started reading, allow me to summarize everything I have written thus far into one sentence:  I am creating a weekly blog in 2007 to be known as the Year of the Captain.  This blog will focus on many different topics, but will always include the following items:  a countdown of days until I am married  and my current weight.  This will help me to focus on my goal.  Some of the other topics discussed will include:

Let me take you on a sea cruise – notes on becoming a Captain

The perfect storm – notes on wedding planning in Florida

Trimming off the barnacles – notes on getting back into shape

Open water – notes on life in the sunshine state

Stern view – notes on 2006

While this blog is being created to help me focus, it is also be used to help keep me in touch with the many people I no longer see on a daily basis.  To that end, I would like to encourage questions, suggestions, and feedback to my blog so that I can know the perspective of whoever is listening.  Keep in mind this blog will be a work in progress.  I am bound to make numerous spelling mistakes, discuss many a stupid topic, and miss the occasional week.  In the 40 weeks ahead until the wedding, my goal will be to post 30 weekly blogs.  Only then will the Year reach its full potential.  So it is with great excitement that I declare December 31st to be the beginning of the Year of the Captain.

What I am about to write is more important than the Constitution.

Ciao,

The Captain

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