Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Damn, girl, you trying to shove that into my brain? (Crown part 4 and 5)

I am so grumpy about how this whole process has turned out, I don't even have any photos from the past two visits to the dentist.

Okay, so to recap. In NOVEMBER, I started this process.  When we started, I was told I needed a root canal, so I got a root canal. 

I went back a few days later to get fitted for a crown at the beginning of DECEMBER. 

Three weeks (more like four) later, I went in for what should have been the final appointment - to get the final crown installed.  It didn't fit.  So, I had to make another casting, wait three weeks and come back.

Because of life, I had to wait another MONTH to come back in. 

At the end of January, I came back in, hoping that THIS time, the crown would fit.

It was the same thing.

The crown didn't FIT!!!  How the hell can it not FIT!  Dr. S was beyond pissed this time. I think he was ready to pull a me and throw something across the room!  Luckily, he didn't try to waste time with more drilling, filing or fitting. He knew it was wrong, he was pissed it was wrong and just decided to have it remade. Again.

Luckily, my temporary wasn't cracked (like last time), so Cassie was able to put it back on.

I was given an appointment to come back on February 24th (another almost MONTH!), so here I am today.

And now I'm pissed.

Apparently, Dr. S is no longer a dentist here. He left me - my awesome dentist with the bad jokes and cool attitude has left me.

I'm stuck with Dr. H, an older lady with a cool Indian accent and no chair-side manner to speak of.

And to add insult to injury, Cassie isn't here today, so I'm also stuck with a different dental tech, who doesn't quite understand what "gentle touch" means.  I mean, I shouldn't feel pain on a tooth that has no roots, but she's still causing pain!  She pulled off my temporary like she was yanking a cup out of a dispenser.  Hello?! There's a person under here!!!  Chill out a bit.

Once my temporary was off, she started trying to fit the crown, and again, it wasn't going where it needed to go. She began to vocally complain about my gums being in the way. Now, I know that's it's stupid, but it's probably a good idea not to complain about someones body parts WHILE that person is sitting in your chair. I can't control my gums from REGROWING after I was laser-troughed TWO months ago!  If your lab hadn't fucked up, we wouldn't be here today.

So, without telling me what the hell is going on (I mean, seriously, this woman was treating me like a mouth instead of a person), she left to talk to Dr. H.  Upon her return, she began shoving something in my mouth, up in my gums! And, of course, I can't ask, because she's got her hands in my freakin' mouth!

Once she was done, though, I asked her what she was doing, and, after sighing like I was asking to borrow $100, she told me that she was "packing my gums." No other info after that, you know, like why she was doing it. (I Googled it when I got home, and it's to create better margins for the crown. Further Googling told me that the margin is where the crown meets the tooth. Sure would've been nice if she explained that to me!).

After packing my gums, she tried again to seat the crown, and it fit better, so she called in Dr. H and they cemented my crown on, then removed the packing.  They checked my bite, said it looked good and told me to have a nice day.

Basically, this was the shittiest visit out of the whole damn production. I should have been happy that I finally got my crown finished, but I felt like my "team" had abandoned me, and I was pissed about the crappy way I was treated. 

Once I was done, I just paid my bill ($5 for the office visit, since I paid the big $515 back in November) and got the hell out of there.  I just wanted to put this horrible experience behind me, pay off my smoking Care Credit credit card bill, and avoid any more dental visits for a while.

At least I finally have my damn crown!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Lemongrass + Ass Doesn't Smell Very Nice - Gasparilla Distance Classic Weekend 2016 (8k)

Today is the final day of the Michelob Ultra Lime Cactus Challenge - a simple 8k.  It started relatively late in the morning, so I had plenty of time to wake up, without having to rush.

Unfortunately, after my tormented lady-bits discovery, I had to make sure I lubed up some new parts. I exclusively use Ruby's Lube as my lube of choice; it's all natural, with only 5 ingredients. I'm not sure whether it's the lemongrasss or the calendula that gives it it's distinctive smell, but I love it. However, I just gotta say... lubing those down south bits was gross, and I didn't like doing it.

After I was greased up and dressed, I got the family up, we all packed and loaded the car, then came back inside for breakfast!  We never have time for hotel breakfast!

Our hotel had a nice spread of cold items like fruit, yogurt and cereal, as well as hot items like eggs, biscuits, sausage and make-your-own waffles. I ended up with a waffle, some sausage (it was smoked sausage, like keilbasa, not breakfast sausage like McDonald's, which was kind of weird), a biscuit, some eggs and OJ.  I wasn't impressed with the waffle - this was my first foray into the Hotel Waffle Experience, and I thought that my waffle was much too soft. It wasn't crunchy, so the syrup just soaked right into it and made it a very large sponge.  I did enjoy the sausage, of which I could have enjoyed a pound or so, but I didn't want to overload my stomach with grease. The OJ had pulp in it, so I didn't enjoy it nearly as much as I wished I did. The biscuit was a biscuit, probably came from Sam's or Sysco.

Once we finished breakfast, we officially checked out and headed back to our super-secret parking lot. I was worried it might be full from the folks already out there doing the half-marathon, but we lucked out.

I loaded up and we headed over to the 8k.  With kisses from the family, I headed to the start line, while they headed over to the Plant Ave Overpass (yeah, I looked it up between the post from yesterday and today).

We waited... and waited... and waited.  So I took some start line selfies. Set up the Garmin. Made sure my Nike+ and Interval Timer were ready. Made sure the music was going.

Are we there yet? It's a loooooong walk to the Start Line!
I made it!  Start Line Selfie!
We cheered on some of the half-marathon folks coming in to the finish chute, but finally, it was our turn to go.

Off we go!
I love runners who carry big flags!
The 8k follows the same route as the 15k and the 8k, so there are no surprises. Unfortunately, that also makes it a boring course to do multiple times.

I'm watching you, Mile 4 Water Stop
The 8k leader passed me at about 21 minutes. I made it to Mile 1 right after that.

I'm not really this slow, I'm just stuck in the back
The weather was nice, not cold, and I was full-on 'running' at this point; I was skipping my walk intervals and soon made it to Mile 2.

Mile 2, LOTS of 8k'ers returning already!
Big Head Guy met us at the turn-around and we began to head back up Bayshore Blvd.  There were still a LOT of people behind me!

Big Head Guy says turn around!
Look at all of those people still behind me!
The return trip always seems so much longer... I think it's because I don't have a focal point.  I can't look in front of me and say "oh, I need to go to that blue builidng."

I meandered and made my way to Mile 3.

Mile 3, less than two miles to go
At about this point, my crummy camera died.  It's been dying a lot, and I know I need a new one, so I guess it's time to get serious about finding a new one (it getting soaked in the bag with my banana yesterday didn't help at all, I'm sure!)

I'm not 100% sure this is the same guy, but I'm pretty sure I caught up to the American Flag Guy from the photo up above, so I'm not way behind!  Sure, could be a totally different guy, but I choose not to believe that!

I'm about 99% sure it's the same guy
Big Head Guy was out to tell us that there was 1 mile to go - so I knew I was at mile 3.93!

Mile 3.93! (I think their math is off, if the Mile 4 sign is that close...)
Right after that was the Mile 4 sign.  So close! Less than a mile to go.

Past Mile 4, maybe 4.5, there is a water stop.  And yes, AGAIN, the water station was shut down before we got there.  All that was left was cases of gallon jugs of water.  This is so fucking frustrating!  It's a race. In Florida. In Tampa. By water.  You have a 99.44% chance of it being fucking hot. Why can you not keep volunteers out here for an additional hour so that us slow folks in the back aren't forced to chug water from a fucking jug?

I didn't stop for water - I didn't want to worry about backwash
I kept on going, I knew I was almost there. I passed under the first overpass and I could see the chute.

Lookin' good!
I finished upright and my official time was 1:23:26.  I missed PR'ing by about 90 seconds!  Oh well.  I wasn't trying to PR, so I'm happy with my results!

This photo is so cool, almost Tilt-ish, or HDR
I got hugs and kisses from the family, picked up my 8k medal and my AWESOME challenge medal (much better than last year's!) and headed back to the car (via that cool bridge shortcut). I had no craps to give about the stupid afterparty today.  I dind't need another granola bar or watered down soda.

I saw this photo and said "Damn, my boobs are HUGE!"
Once in the car, we had to decide where to wander (to get the crap out of my legs before we drove 2 hours home). IKEA!  Of course! And it was only a few minutes away! I changed clothes there, and then we wandered a bit.  I picked up a few pendant lamps and shades (originally, I just got a pendant and shade for me, to go over the treadmill, but the Kiddo decided she wanted a light too, so we got one for her).  We spent a whopping $31 at Ikea (I know, sacrilege!)

While sitting on the very comfy couches in the IKEA showroom, we decided what we wanted to do for lunch.  Nothing in town was sounding good, and I had an odd hankering for Dairy Queen.  We found one in Brooksville that served a few purposes; it got us out of town and it helped us avoid the Dade City area of I-75.  However, before leaving, we did hit up the WaWa for gas, snacks (including Meat Cups™) and beverages. That came out to about $30.

The drive up 589 was very peaceful; well, once we left Tampa it was peaceful. I think we spent about $7 on tolls going back and forth all morning. Not a bad price to pay for avoiding the interstate!

Once we got to Dairy Queen, I was starving, and tired.  The kiddo got the popcorn shrimp combo with a milkshake as her drink. Hubby got a chicken sandwich combo with a milkshake. I was happy to see a fish sandwich on the menu (Thanks, Catholics!), so I definitely got that, with a regular soda to drink (they have good ice!). This was about $24, not bad at all!

I'm a fan!
We were given a number and our food was brought out to us, so it was nice and hot.  My sandwich was nice and large (not piddly, like McDonald's), and very crispy.  I devoured it!

Sorry for the missing bite, I was famished! 

I skipped having ice cream, (though I really - REALLY - wanted a caramel sundae) because I was ready to go. We ended up getting home around 4:30. We unpacked, put stuff away.  I hopped into the shower for a nice (well-deserved) long, hot shower and plopped my butt in bed by 6pm.  I watched some DVRd stuff, read my book, tweeted and just generally chilled out.

All in all, this was a very successful weekend - even without any PRs.  I think it was due in part to having a great hotel location, which gave us access to food and a convenience store within walking distance, as well as a great parking spot for both days of the race.  Hopefully we can afford to book this hotel again next year. It was, without a doubt, the priciest room we've stayed at for a race - over $300 for two nights! But, we know that Tampa is an expensive place to stay, if you want to be close to downtown.  This hotel was ony $50 more per night than we paid for the shitty Ramada on Strip Club Row last year, and it was a world apart, in terms of quality for what we recieved. More important than amenities or accessibility of food, I felt SAFE in this hotel. I didn't feel safe at the other one.

What in the Ass?! - Gasparilla Distance Classic Weekend 2016 (15k)

Today was Day 1 of 2 - the 15k portion of the Michelob Ultra Lime Cactus Challenge!

I woke up around 3am and tried to eat a cheese bagel (plain bagel with melted cheese on top).  I made it through half of it before my tummy said fuck this shit, no food for you. So, I got dressed, hoping I'd get hungry on the way there.

I woke up the family, who also got ready to go.

We headed to the car (parked right out front, in that fabulous parking spot!) and turned on the Garmin, assuming it was going to tell us to get back on Veteran's Expressway. Well, it told us instead to to via Kennedy and Willow - it avoided VE and all that craziness altogether! And since it was so early in the morning, surface road traffic was all but nonexistant.  Very nice!

When we were less than a mile away from the race area, my body said PEE, so I pulled over to a Walgreen's and got in line to pee (we must be close, there are other runners here!). Hubby thought he saw somewhere to park, so he went to scope it out.

Now, I'm a Purchase Pee-er.  If I stop in your place of business and use your bathroom, I will purchase something, so I'm not a Facilities Freeloader.  I grabbed a Pepsi, and was waiting in line when Hubby came running in, telling me that there's a great parking lot around the corner, but oh my god, we have to go now, it's filling up and it's the end of the world if we don't go now, oh my god, oh my god, ohmygod!

I looked at him and made that face of "what the fuck, man, you are insane," but decided to go with him. I apologized to the cashier and put my Pepsi down and followed him back to the car.

He gave me directions of how to get to this magical, filling-up-exponentially-fast parking lot, which was right under the Selman Expressway, and very close to the starting line. 

It also wasn't anywhere near full.  He didn't realize - since it was still dark - how large the lot was, and just overreacted.  

So, we sat in the car for a bit, I choked down some Gu, then threw on my shoes, geared up and got ready to go. 

We walked over to the 15k staging area, where Hubby and the Kiddo gave me hugs and kisses. I made my way to the back of the pack, looking for any sort of pacer signs or people. I got my Garmin locked on, powered up my Nike+ app and I was ready to go.  Oh, and my intervals were set for 1/1.  

I took off, passing the family with a wave and was feeling good.  Or at least as good as I could, since I was still as undertrained as I was for Celebration last month.

Here we go! (That's the finish line on the left)
Full on Pirate costume (and more finish line)
I walked past the finish line that will handle about a bajillion people this weekend, and passed under some road (I still don't know what that is!).  I saw a 15mm pacer, and I fell in line behind the group. I was able to keep up for about a mile, so I'm pretty proud of that!

15mm Pacer Group
The 15k leader returned before I'd even made it to Mile 1!

Go Speedy!
Mile 1 - I'm not that slow
I was falling behind the pacer, but I was still kind of close.  I'd been doing a full run now (instead of intervals), and I was feeling pretty good!

Before Mile 2, the Rough Riders were out, handing out beads again.  I grabbed a few and kept going.
Huge bus of Rough Riders
Good colors this time!
I came up on Mile 2, and saw this guy - I think he's just a Bayshore resident out for a nice walk!  Seriously, he's walking and reading a book at the same time, while I'm struggling to keep up with him. Devestating.

I wonder what he was reading?
I also passed this corner, that was fenced off for construction.  I'm not sure what is (or was) there, or what wll be there, but there was a sign that said "Veteran's Corner" so I'm hoping it will be something awesome next year.  Also, spray painted on te fence was some very odd grafitti - Apparently, what Cody saw will save your life...  Just eat the damn pig.

Veteran's Corner - under construction
Sad, vegan grafitti
I'm still feeing pretty good, as evidenced by this super-artsy, sunrise selfie. I sound like a smart-ass, but really, I think it's a pretty cool photo (as far as running photos go, anyway).

Sunrise Selfie
I made it to the first water stop, which is huge! Since I had Nathan by my side, I skipped the stop.

Water, water everywhere...
...and plenty for me to drink
I've successfully made it to Mile 2, and already it feels like I've gone a lot longer than that!

Yay, Mile 2

Luckily, Mile 3 came a lot quicker.

High Five - We made it to Mile 3
It was at this point I took my first Honey Stinger. I wanted to get through this vertically, and if I put off the fuel, the back end of my races are pure hell.

Honey Stinger - the perfect choice for ARFID sufferers
I made it to Mile 4!   Still truckin' on down Bayshore.

Mile 4
At one point, this runner passed me and I just had to question the clothing choice?  I'm guessing the long running skirt is for religious reasons?  I knew girls in my high school that had the long hair and always wore long skirts - I can't remember the religion, but this reminds me of them.  Whatever she was, she was faster than me!

Did she make it? Buy it? Inquiring minds...
(At some point, I crossed this mat. I can't remember if it was a 5k mat, a halfway mat or what, but there's proof that I crossed it!)

Yay! Random timing mat!
We got to Gandy and hooked a right. There was a HUGE inflatable stick-figure holding a sign and I thought it was so cute! What a good way of making sure runners see where to go.  Also, if you look at the street lights - the four on the right/center are pointed to the RIGHT, too!  Very clever.

Go RIGHT? The sign says NO RIGHT TURN... I'm so confused...
We didn't go very far down Gandy before hitting the turn-around spot.  I like turn-arounds, because I can see who's still behind me without being that runner who literally turns around to see who's behind them.  Like, I'm not so worried about you that I have to check out my competition, but it's nice to know who's back there.

Mile 5 - officially more than halfway finished!
We headed back to Bayshore for the long walk back. Bayshore welcomed us back.

Welcome to Bayshore Beautiful
Apparently the medians of Bayshore are considered a park
Also near this point was my favorite spectator - the Krispy Kreme Man! Judging by the pile of empty boxes, he'd given out a lot, but there was still some for me! A lot of people passed him up, but not me!

So many empty boxes! Is there one for me?
Yippee! A donut for me!
Also, near the donut guy was this fabulous DJ.  He was playing really high-energy tunes and was stanidng out on the road, dancing.  Many people stopped to dance with him for a sec, but I wasn't ablt to get a good shot of him.

This guy had abs for days, too
Bayshore Boulevard IS beautiful. And houses are ONLY in the millions... Maybe one day.

I'm so far away from the finish line...
Hey, there's random religious girl again.  I'm keeping up with her!

I've made it to Mile 6, and I have just over a 5k to finish. Sadly that means another hour...

Mile 6
Now that the 5k is getting ready to take off, the race staff had to move the Big Head guy.  They literally just picked him up, threw him in the back of a truck, and took off down the road.

Keep on truckin', Big Head guy
Mile 7 now. It's getting pretty hot out here.

Mile 7. I'm ready to be done now.
Nothing interesting happened between Mile 7 and Mile 8, so here's some Rough Riders at Mile 8 (soon to be the 5k turn-around spot).

Hey, guys! You got any beads?
I got to the next mile marker fairly quickly, and saw that it said Mile 2.  Uh, say what?  Oh, that's the Mile Marker for the 5k.

Thanks for making me do MATH!
However, because I could still math pretty well in my head at that point, I knew that that sign meant there was only 1.1 miles left to go. My mantra became “1.1, 1.1, 1.1, motherf&$ker, 1.1”  Yeah, I cuss to get through difficult moments.

They put Big Head Man up at Mile 8.3 to encourage everyone that there was only a mile to go. I kept repeating my mantra.

Mile 8.3!
I saw the bright yellow stripe in the road, which meant I was close - that area is where they take some cool "from the air" race photos. Mine did not come out well, so I won't subject you to them.

Nope, that's not the finish line...
Once I passed that area, you could tell they opened the floodgates of 5k people, because they began storming down Bayshore!

Have fun storming the castle!
Mile 9! I'm so close!! There's the bridge (it always has a sign that says "The End is In Sight").

Mile 9!  Only .3 to go!!!
I got passed by both the lead wheelchair athlete, as well as the first 5k runner, but I'm okay with that.

They see me rollin', they hatin'
I see the chute! I'm so close!

Go, Go, Go!
I look SO HAPPY in this photo!
They have, I think, the longest finisher's chute I've ever encountered. It goes on forever, but I finally crossed the finish line! My official time was 2:39:41.  I didn't PR, but I didn't expect to.  I got my medal, and my water, then caught up with the family.

MarathonFoto - After getting medal and water
I changed into my flops and got a finisher photo by some super-deluxe power transformers.

Those are some sexy toes
Now, how are we going to get back across where we need to go?  Not a problem, said Hubby!  They found a really neat walkway that goes UNDER the bridge!  It was a little claustrophobic, but I felt like I was running liquor. 

It's a little claustrophobic in there
It's VERY close to the Bay.

I could probably spit in the water, if I wanted to
We headed to the after-party area, in front of the convention center, where I got a banana (for the Kiddo), some energy bars, a bag to carry all this stuff and a fruit cup. (At some point, I put my tumbler in there to carry it in to the hotel and I forgot it was in there, so everything got wet and ruined).

I also wanted to check out the Q105 After-Party area, since we didn't go there last year.  Wow, it was like a half-mile away and what a let-down! It was all beer and bad live music.  So, we left there pretty quickly and walked back to the car. But, hey, I know for future races that it's not something I want to experience!

At some point (don't know where), I changed clothes and noticed that my butt hurt (TMI, I know).  I thought I might have gotten Swass (Sweaty Ass), so I gave myself a wedgie (so my butt cheeks wouldn't touch each other) and forgot all about it.

We went over to the Citrus Park Mall, where we had a date with some movies.  Hubby and I were going to see Deadpool (he'd already seen it), while the Kiddo was going to see Kung Fu Panda (she didn't think she could handle the violence in Deadpool).

I had booked online using Fandango ($35), so all we had to do was give our printout to the ticket taker.  Once inside, we hit up the concession stand.  The snacks - even for movie theatre standards - were expensive! Seriously, we spent $30+ on 2 popcorns and 3 drinks!  And then, when we got our food, the popcorn was stale and the soda was watered-down.  Blech. And there was no salt anywhere - I had to ask for it. And (okay, first world problem here...) there was no DIY butter dispensers either...
Luckily, the theatre was pretty nice - the seats reclined!  Hubby didn't know about this perk, or that I'd reserved seats - we were mid-auditorium in the middle of the row. Very nice! 

It's very important to elevate your feet
Rare Hubby Shot, looking dapper in blue jeans
I wish I'd brought a jacket or something though. It was (as it usually is) too chilly for me, especially with exposed feet.

The movie was fucking fantastic - and that is high praise from a woman who gives no shits about action or super-hero movies.  But then again, I've loved Ryan Reynolds since he was Berg on "Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place." And that's saying something, because that show had Nathan Freakin' Fillion!

After the movie (still bummed about the damn popcorn), we walked around the mall before grabbing dinner at Red Robin.

They tried to seat us at a table that was right at the entrance of the restuarant, and I asked for a different table. I'm a weird person; I don't like people seeing me eat, and I felt like, since the table was at the entrance to the whole restaurant, EVERYONE who walked in would look at me.

So, we got a better table, near the back.  At this point, it's around 5pm on a Saturday night. I didn't think it would be this busy already, but it was, so it took a long time for food to come. It did, eventually, and it was glorious (I love Red Robin).  I got a Tavern Double (that ended up being free, thanks to Red Robin Rewards).  The Kiddo got Corn Dog Nuggets and Hubby got a Bacon Cheeseburger. Our total was around $22 (yeah, dinner was less than movie theatre snacks...)

We rolled out of Red Robin, made our way to WaWa for dessert (they had milkshakes, I had a Nutty Bar), grabbed some cookies from the lobby and went up to our room.

I prepped for Sunday by taking a nice hot bath and trying to take care of my chapped ass.  I've never chafed there before, but apparently there is a first time for everything, and holy shit was my ass RED!  The pain when I sat in the tub was indescribable.  Guess I'll have to lube that up tomorrow...

After my bath, I twittered, chilled, read my book and eventually fell asleep.