In like a lion

Friday after work I went and got my headlight replaced. I’m not sure why it should be, but any car repair feels great. Weird, right? I then went to Level 1 practice to work on skating. I got to work with Misch the whole time and I thought it went quite well. She really provided the right mix of encouragement, pushing, distraction, patience, knowledge, and advice. I feel very good about how that session went. After practice, a few of us went out to Venti’s for a drink and a bite to eat. A good time.

Saturday, I got up earlier than I’d have liked to go pick up Tom and drive to Medford. We were only about 15 minutes late getting on the road and it didn’t throw off the trip at all. We stopped in Roseburg for lunch at McMenamins. I had a delicious stew and checked another location off my list. Proceeding on to Medford, we arrived at the derby bout location shortly before 2:00. Did a brief check in and then went to meet up with my friend, Denise, whom I had not seen in 25 years. Our visit was nice.

Sidebar. This trip to Medford had been in the works for over a month. The plan went through several changes along the way; most of them without my input. Now you know that I am a planner and that I’m very uncomfortable with leaving things ‘til the last minute, but I am trying to loosen up and go with the flow. One iteration of the plan was to book rooms at the same hotel where the after party would be. I was fine with this idea, but one of the few people who’d be staying over (there were only going to be four of us from Salem staying at a hotel) wasn’t especially keen on the idea and wanted to wait until getting down there to find a hotel. I went with it and just put it in her hands to select a place where she and her friend, and Tom and I would get rooms. When all was said and done, we ended up getting rooms at that hotel anyway. Why we couldn’t have made reservations the week (or more) before, I don’t know. But there were rooms available so it all worked out. Amusingly, after we’d gotten those rooms, the after party was moved to a different location, so we needn’t have stayed there after all. C’est la vie.

The bout was interesting although rather disorganized on the officiating front. NSO positions hadn’t really been assigned, there wasn’t a full compliment of skating officials, the scoreboard had some problems, lots of time outs for discussion among officials… Ultimately, we got it done.

Proceed to the after party. It was a little dive bar that was already packed. Karaoke was the name of the game and the derby folks jumped into the mix.

Here’s where it all turned sour. Part of my neurosis is a heightened sensitivity to my place in a group. I often feel like I don’t fit in, that I don’t receive the right kind/amount of attention. I often feel very isolated. I don’t know if it better to acknowledge this by avoiding group situations or by throwing myself into the middle of them. Anyway, in a big group, I prefer to link up with one or two others rather than be adrift amidst the crowd. I’m all about the buddy system. I suppose this can accurately be characterized as clingy. Anyway, I had no ‘buddy’ on Saturday, but this wasn’t debilitating. But then, at one point, Tom comes and informs me that he, Angie, and Heather have decided to walk back to the hotel at the end of the night as they’d all had too much to drink. Further, I’m told that they’ve decided to go with a couple of the host league members to a different bar up the road. Perhaps I should be glad that they thought to inform me, but I was just annoyed that more plans had been made/adjusted without regard to my thoughts/wants.

Sunday morning, I get up early-ish again as I have to be back in Salem by 12:30. Tom gets up but tells me that he’ll be riding back home with the girls. Ok. #1, this is fine because I actually prefer long drives by myself. #2, yet another plan that changed on me. In the planning for this trip, Angie had made it clear to me that she didn’t want to room with a bunch of people and that she didn’t want to travel with people. It would have been better if Tom could have come down with them too, but Angie wanted to do her own thing. Now, it turns out that he’s riding home with them. Fricking fantastic. To top it all off, it turns out I left my jacket hanging in the closet of the hotel. Tom did grab it and bring it back, so that’s good.

I made it home in great time. I got to stop of my apartment to grab my skate gear before going off to meet my gaming people for the afternoon. Decent session of Cthulhu, then back to the Mad House for men’s practice. Men’s practice sort of sucked. I am so much less skilled than anyone else so I can’t participate in what they are doing and I’m just a loner again. I spent time on wheels for 45 minutes and then called it quits for the evening. There was a CCDG orientation session going on with a bunch of new girls there to (possibly) sign up to begin level 1. I was actually assigned as a mentor for a woman who wants to explore volunteering and working as an NSO. It’s apparently the first time there’s ever been an NSO mentor. That’s kind of interesting. I stopped at the supermarket to buy a selection of soups for the week before returning home. A little TV, then to bed.

I didn’t sleep especially well. And I’m not feeling great today. It’s too warm what with the sun shining into my office and all. Plus I’m coughing a little. Not a major deal, yet. But I suspect that it’s a precursor to a more severe illness. My calves hurt (which is a good thing) and I’m just feeling generally uncomfortable. Also, I’m getting fat again. Ankle be damned, I need to start running again. Maybe tonight. But I need to fit in running around seeing a movie and working on an episode of The Forum this evening. Having a job keeps me too damn busy.