Thursday, March 19, 2009

I tried a new machine today, and the President gets one right.

I can’t say very nice things about this day as I have for the last several. It’s just plain lousy outside. We are having showers and they are very light, but the day is dark and dank. The weather guy said this morning it should clear out during the day and there’s just a small chance we’ll some sunshine later on.

I hope that sun dries us out. To be quite frank, this weather is doing a number on my body. It’s very sore today. I almost didn’t go to my senior fitness class because my hip, with the steel in it, and my knees were hurting so much. But I don’t want to get into making excuses for not doing my little workout so off I went.

As it turned out, I’m very glad I did. I tried a new (to me) machine today. The company has a neat rowing machine. I sit on a little seat that moves back and forth as I push with my legs. I’m holding a tension device which provides what I guess you might call the weight. (I should put in here that my Fearless Friend would probably tell me I don’t need any additional weight to row. But I won’t.)

That is some neat machine. Tension is applied only on the pulling part just as it would be if one were rowing a boat. About half way through my short routine . . . the person who watches over me said I should keep it short and light until I get used to it . . . I noticed that the part of me that was noticing the activity the most was my tummy. I’ve got one. My legs also noticed that I was working on something different.

The PT place didn’t have one of these machines in its old location so I hadn’t been introduced to it before. Although I did have a light tension today and my routine was only for about five minutes this learning time, I could feel the effect on body parts that hadn’t had that kind of exercise in a long time. It far exceeds the stationary bike or any of the other routines I do. If, and of course that’s a big if here, it indeed does help out my belly, I’ll put this machine high on my list of favorite routines.

President Obama has done one thing right. After telling veterans’ groups on Monday that he was proposing billing the private insurance companies of armed forces personnel for their military related injuries, yesterday he reconsidered the plan and called it off.

The veterans’ groups told the President that the plan would be too costly and could even force some business owners not to hire returning veterans because the cost of their health care would be too high. The President had told the groups that part of the plan was to pour $25 billion into the system over five years and make many more veterans eligible for treatment at VA hospitals.

He was told that private companies would have to raise their premiums to cover those service related injuries and that many veterans and their families simply would find paying the premiums too much of a hardship.

When the plan was revealed, it brought forth an avalanche of protests from veterans and from non-veterans alike. Maine Congressman Michael Michaud said he would never support such a plan. Many Americans felt that it was outrageous to think our brave military personnel who volunteer to protect America wouldn’t have their country stand behind them if they received a military related injury.

These comments today were going to be a reflection of my own outrage at such a plan, and I’ve never been in the military. I honor these brave men and women and believe our nation should do all it can to help them through trying times. The President, although first bringing on my personal outrage, calmed it before I needed to vent. I haven’t said, “Good job, Mr. President” much in the last few weeks, but consider it said on this issue.

Do you have a Facebook page or a Twitter account? I have both. I joined both groups, and this week. I have absolutely no idea why except “everyone” is doing it. That’s the same “everyone” I used to chide my kids about when they were begging for something I wasn’t going to let them have.

Now that I have a Facebook page and have the ability to tweet, I don’t have a clue on how to make them work. Sure. I can log in to both and get a very generic page. But what in the devil does one do on them? I certainly don’t know so both of mine remain relatively blank. I couldn’t even find a way on the pages to cancel these accounts. Since I created a new account to use for email on these sites, I guess I can just cancel it and let it all go quietly away. At least my inbox won’t get flooded with stuff I don’t want.

The NCAA national basketball tourney begins today. Well, actually, it began a couple nights ago when Morehead State won it’s prelim for the 64th seed. Morehead now plays Louisville in the first round. They might have wished they lost. Getting back to the main subject, we’ll get a great chance to see some good basketball, and probably some pretty bad basketball, over the next couple of weeks.

I have one minor question about the tourney. Why is a West Regional first round being played in Philadelphia and an East Regional first round being played in Boise, Idaho? Other brackets have the same convoluted schedule. I really don’t care, but it sure does look ridiculous.

The NIT is also underway. Given a choice, I’ll be watching the NCAA tourney. But I should mention, although I can’t tell you why, that I saw on the scoreboard this morning that the Gators have advanced with a win over Jacksonville. Miami, according to the scoreboard, beat Providence so the Gators and Hurricanes will meet in the next round in Gainesville. But CBS begins broadcasting the NCAAs shortly after noon today, so that’s where I’ll be right into bedtime.


No comments: