Friday, May 14, 2010

Consequences of drinking

This morning I woke up in bed screaming. As seems to happen on an annual basis, I'd drunk enough last night to rinse all the essential salts and other minerals from my body, and thus my left calf had decided to cramp up to the point that it felt the muscle was about to detach from my leg and spang across the room.

For the rest of the day I walked around rather gingerly, fearing that my leg would suddenly give way and I'd be (inexplicably to my coworkers) thrashing around on the office floor, yelling oaths and decrying the unkind Creator of a universe that would make things like this happen to me.

This fate escaped me, and so at six I decided to brave things and head to the gym, where I spent an unpleasant fifteen minutes running on a treadmill, ten minutes on a stationary bicycle, and five minutes on a rowing machine.  It was only after I'd spent five minutes yanking on the rowing machine that I noticed there was a lever to adjust the difficulty, and it was set towards the big-and-beefy-I'm-a-hard-man-with-buns-of-steel setting.

There was no point adjusting it once I'd finished, and indeed, when I'd started, there'd been somebody on the next machine over, and I'd have felt [stupidly] self-conscious to have adjusted it down to an appropriate level for myself, so it wouldn't have made any difference anyway.  But now I feel as tired as Sisyphus must have after pushing that stone uphill all day, and while we might imagine he was quite happy, he didn't have to put up with Microsoft Excel and handwriting KML files until your eyes begin to bleed.  Yep, I reckon the life of an office drone is several orders of magnitude harsher than pushing inconvenient objects up slopes throughout eternity, and anyone who thinks Prometheus was hard done by because of all that business with his liver should just spend a day trying to stop Powerpoint mucking up the format of your carefully crafted graphs for the tenth time.  (I'd say nth time, but there aren't good tools for iterating reports the way I want, so the joy of referring to things by abstracted indical numbers is denied me by Office.  Cheers, Bill G.)

I shambled home after this, reading some more of the story of Chiang Kai Shek and the Communists; it's interesting how it now veers between farce and tragedy, and once again I count myself lucky that I wasn't living in China in the first half of the twentieth century.


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