who wouldn’t want to jump in a frozen pond at that temperature

I used to be a gigantic proponent and hugely involved with that big ol’ charity walk for breast cancer that involved walking 60 miles in three days. Some of the memories I have from the six years I spent involved in the event are fantastic. I met some really fantastic people, challenged myself physically, raised a hell of a lot of money and even shaved my head. Since walking away from that, I’ve had a hard time finding something else that I want to dedicate myself to just as much. There’s plenty of causes out there that I believe passionately in, but there’s just something else about doing something to create more awareness to a particular charity or organization.

When I interviewed at my current job, they asked me how much I was involved with community events at my old job. My answer? Uhh… So, when over 100 people at my current gig signed up to jump in frozen lakes across the state for the Special Olympics’ Polar Plunge, I jumped on that really cold bandwagon. I mean, why not, right? What’s a few minutes in Lake Calhoun on March 1st, following what’s apparently been one of the coldest winters Minnesota has had in the last five billion hundred years?

And you know what happened today? I looked at the 10 day forecast. (Cue really sad noises right there.)

10dayplungeforecast

Looks like March 1st is going to be a tad chilly, no? Jumping in a lake at 11:15 am when the low the night before is -9 degrees? I bet goosebumps will be involved.

Amelia is working on my costume. The group I’m jumping with is dressing as superheroes and my color of choice was yellow. And then I found SOLID GOLD fabric at the store and promptly switched my colors up. I’m excited about it! Pretty sure I’ll pee my pants from cold, but, hey, it’ll just warm things up in my wet pants, right?

If you’re so inclined, please feel free to donate! I’m leading the way in donations among my team, but would love to hit the $400 mark! My original goal of $200 was taken care of pretty quickly thanks to some really awesome people in my life that apparently think it’d be a great idea to see me do this little stunt. Here’s the link where you can donate.

In the grand scheme of things, this should probably be less terrifying than jumping off a very tall building in Vegas, right?

and we’re the ones that had to see a reproductive psychologist (and how i teach you about sperm)

For the past 11 days (not that we’re counting), we’ve sat at home and tried to kill time the best we can to distract ourselves from thinking about what may or may not be taking place in Amelia’s innards. That usually lasts about an hour or two before we start typing things like 10dpiui (which is code for 10 days post-intrauterine insemination) into Google and see exactly what this potential zygote is up to right now – growing legs, filing its fingernails, reciting the Gettysburg Address, whatevs.

And as we all know from spending way too much time on the internet, it’s full of nobody but dummies. With the exception of you all, of course.

I don’t really know what it was that my wife was Googling tonight and I probably don’t want to. I just know that this screenshot happened:

lotsofspermquestions

Granted, this was from ask.com, which I think only gets used by people that can’t spell Google, but still… These questions? Really? Let me do my part to help answer these questions about sperm, keeping in mind that I really know nothing about it, except how much it costs when you want to buy 23 million of them.

  1. What is dry sperm? Gross and dead.
  2. Is sperm nutritious? Are you gulping gallons per day? Then don’t worry about it.
  3. How to kill sperm? With tiny shivs made out of toothbrushes.
  4. Is ‘semen’ sperm? Semen contain spermatozoa, my friend. I learned that in my Biology class.
  5. Do girls sperm? … I just … why?
  6. Is sperm healthy? Pretty sure it’s low carb, so that’s a start!

And see, these people are just ladies sexin’ some bros and they have no idea about anything. And they’re the ones that end up letting their kids climb into a machine full of stuffed animals that you have to get out with a claw. Or the ones that can’t brush their own teeth without poking their eyes out with their toothbrush.

strengths finder results from a couple of years ago

At my old job, we took the StrengthsFinder 2.0 test. My current boss handed me the book today, but because I like to save money, I was like – HOLD UP. Instead, I got my results from my last job, which I figure can be part of my compensation from screwing me out of a week’s worth of unused sick time and a bonus for being there for five years. (I’m not bitter… well, I am, but I’d gladly trade that crap for being in the kind of environment I’m in now.)

And here are my strengths, which I’m documenting solely for my own personal use in the future when I wonder about what my strengths were when I was working 50 hour a week in a job that I really loved while I was in my early 30s.

  • Activator
  • Command
  • Competition
  • Individualization
  • Learner

To delve more into the details:

Activator: I turn thoughts into actions and I’m impatient. My process is often sloppy, but shit gets done. I learn from experiencing, not from lecturing and theoretical discussions that never go anywhere. This might also be code for workaholic, but I’ll take it. 

Command: I have presence. I will take control of a situation and make decisions. I may possibly intimidate people, but people are still drawn to me. I lead by example and my emotions can take over an entire room. Not the first time I’ve been told that and I try to only use it for good and not for evil!

Competition: I would like to win, please. I especially like contests where I know I can win. I basically need other people around just to use them as a yardstick to measure my awesome abilities in everything. While I know life’s not a competition, I like work to be because I like to be the best. It can also help motivate others to want to win as well.

Individualization: I’m intrigued with each person I get to know and have a gift at figuring out how people who might be different can work together successfully. I draw out the best in people and make successful teams. I love some diversity! This just tells me I should be a WNBA scout, if I’m reading this right.

Learner: Love the process of learning. I don’t need to be a subject matter expert, but I like knowing… stuff. The idea of continuously improving is appealing to me. I don’t want to become stagnant in a role or in a company that’s just happy with doing the same thing day in and day out.

Back in the day when I worked at Best Buy, we took this same thing. I don’t remember all of my results, but I do remember I used to have WOO on my list. And that talks about meeting new people and breaking the ice and winning them over. It’s kind of fascinating (in a super nerdy way) that I’ve completely dropped that from my repertoire of strengths as I’ve gotten older and actually found my career niche.

OMG. Thus ends my work nerdiness. I can’t help it. I f’ing love learning about people. And, according to me, I’m the best person to learn about. Must explain my obsession of still maintaining old school blogging, which is, you know, ALL ABOUT ME.

it’s been nine long days of waiting

Nine days is a lot. And the nagging thing is that we have at least seven more days from there before we’re able to find out if the completely invasive procedure that my wife had done last week actually worked. We’re having an ongoing dialogue to try to figure out if we just test when the doctor said we could or if we just let nature run it’s course and see what happens.

I know I’ve mentioned this before, but Amelia is very well read and has studied birthing and pregnancy in great detail, both for personal and professional gain. She knows her body pretty well and probably knows mine better than I do. And I mean in the medical sense, because this ain’t that kind of blog. The thing is, I don’t wait for answers. I hate waiting for answers to texts and I really hate waiting for email responses (from my school especially!), but this is kinda different. I can’t harass someone until they just give in and give me an answer.

Today, if this little procedure worked, a little something called implantation can be happening, if it hasn’t already. I went wifeless to Whirlyball on Sunday, because if a blastocyst was going to be implanting, we didn’t feel like it was probably a good idea for her to be sitting in a bumper car and get rammed several dozen times. That implantation thing is pretty important and typically happens between days 8 and 10. So, you know, anytime.

We’re both completely aware of the statistics with this. We know some people who hit it out of the park the first time they tried IUI and got pregnant right away. We know some people that had to try it a few times before it happened and we know some people that just didn’t have any luck with it at all. Statistics suck, but they’re based on things like science and truth. And that’s cool. Just because we’re gay doesn’t mean our entire life is full of rainbows and unicorns. We’re pretty logical folks, too.

We’re continuing to carry on with our lives like we normally would, except the one of us that isn’t currently acting as an incubator is doing more of the heavy lifting, which included a crap load of shoveling snow last night. I figure by the time Kid #1 moves out, Kid #2 will be old enough to shovel the driveway and I won’t complain about that at all.

If one of y’all could make time go a little bit faster and another one of y’all could just ensure we get the answer we want, I’d totally give you naming rights. Just don’t tell my wife.

why whirlyball is the greatest thing in the world

Bumper cars, whiffle balls and flinging it across a closed off room in an attempt to try to get it into a circle with a 20 inch diameter. That’s why it’s the greatest thing in the world. Or at least in the top 100 greatest things in the world.

First a visual:

It’s a shaky video, but playing WhirlyBall isn’t exactly the smoothest thing in the world!

See, Amelia and I first saw this building, which used to be an old movie theater, slowly developing into this WhirlyBall place and we had no idea what it is. My wife, who would probably choose to marry Google instead of me if it were legal, looked it up and saw that it was quite possibly the coolest thing in the world… except it just wasn’t open yet.

Time passed, probably years and years, and it was time for my Bachelorish party. Jenni tried to get a group together, but finding a time in the summer where 10 people are available isn’t kind of tricky… and I didn’t really give her that big of a list to begin with for people that I wanted to spend my last single days with. So, we didn’t get a chance to try it out then.

And then finally, our friend Andy drafted 10 people and WHIRLYBALL WAS ON.

Basically, you split into two teams. One team shoots on one end and vice versa. The wiffle ball gets passed from player to player (or launched down the court) with lacrosse like scoops. The end goal is to hit a circle that’s several feet off the ground. It sounds easy and I suppose it could be, except there’s not a lot of people that can accurately aim a wiffle ball on a regular basis, you know?

If you have a WhirlyBall location in your area, go do it. As Kristin yelled to me on Sunday while we were ramming into each other, it’s impossible not to smile the entire the time you’re playing. Our team got smoked three out of four quarters on Sunday, but you laugh and smile the whole time. It’s a relatively safe game, but there is some random jarring when someone t-bones you with their bumper car, or if you’re like me, and ram the steering stick into your inner thigh at least once each time you play.

There’s one in Chicago, the Detroit area, the Kansas City area, and I’m sure a few more places. If you have the opportunity, it’s absolutely worth it. We’re doing it monthly-ish and it’s absolutely worth every single cent.

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