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Archive for September, 2011

Progress

Quick update. I made the first major progress toward my Running Back challenge today. I ran 35 minutes on the treadmill and 5 minutes on the elliptical to bring my total to 55/296, or ~19% of the way toward catching up with Adrian Peterson. Also, considering how much I’ll be posting about it, I’ve added “running” as a category and tag to the right. The chains will be moved again on Sunday, but I’ll keep on running.

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G+ Gaming

When I first joined Google+ (G+) I perused the possibilities and found circles and hangouts to be a great combination for text based, play-by-post, or video chat gaming. Since my gaming groups are all fragmented and living everywhere, it’s something I’ve given thought about working on, but I just haven’t had the time to really make a go of it. Apparently, people have taken this idea and run with it.

Here are a couple links to people who are making a go of it (fyi, some of the content on the second link is NSFW). Basically, you create a circle with gaming buddies in it and use hangouts to game via video chat. You can post simultaneously and there are lots of sites out there that have resources for this style of gaming. I’m still looking at several and I’m open to suggestions. Skype is an alternative, but it’s multiskype function costs money.

Still, it’s a viable option. I plan on exploring it since I have no clue where I’ll be in the U S of A over the next few years and every dice-roller I know is separated by hundreds of miles. I’ll be sure to post if I make any progress this way. I know several people who would be very happy.

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Oh Matt Schaub…

As I’ve said before: Injuries everywhere! That being said, I still did pretty well this week. Here’s the breakdown.

Team Ramrod (1-1; 4/7)

Win. Squeaker too. Drew Brees (QB) and Ryan Mathews (RB) tied for points with the Jets D/ST costing me points. I’m projected to win next week, but stranger things have happened.

West Chester Disasters (2-1; 4/10)

Loss. I benched two strong players on a week they did well (as opposed to playing them the last few weeks when they did poorly). I opted to start Matt Stafford at QB, you know, because he’s had 2 great weeks. I benched Matt Schaub, you know, because he’s had 2 crap weeks. That cost me. Felix Jones (RB) also had a big game, whereas Rashard Mendenhall (RB) did not. *sigh*

Bangup Job (formerly Philadelphia Noobs) (0-3; 9/10)

Loss. Sucked so bad I changed the name of the team. Sucked so bad I got a trophy for worst loss. I stand by Schaub here, he was my shining star. But when two of your defensive players out score all but one of your offensive players (RBs, WRs, & TEs), you’re bound to lose. Really, Schaub, Steve Johnson (WR), and my defensive players are all I have going for me. I just need to make sure to start the defensive guys that are going to do well.

Hank Jr. Monday Nights (1-2; 9/12)

Loss. Thank you Schaub and Jimmy Graham (TE) for a great game. Oh, and Tyvon Branch (S) too. The rest of you have to run laps. Two of my benched guys had a great game too. My problem here is that I have a lot of great defensive guys and nowhere to put them. This team is only slightly better than Bangup Job, though I am not complaining about the offense here. I have a lot more options with this team for sure.

Marshawn Lynch Mob (2-1; 4/10)

Win. Aaron Rodgers (QB) of course dominated. Tyvon Branch helped out too. George Wilson (S) had a hell of a game as well. Really, it was as strong showing by my defensive guys. As the old story goes, I benched guys I shouldn’t have and played guys that were duds. Live and learn.

Schaden Freuds (3-0; 2/8)

Win. Big win. Trophy win. Too many stars to name on this one. Ben Tate (RB) was a flop after he was talked up to replace Arian Foster (RB). I chose wisely with this bunch. The downer was Michael Vick (QB) going down and hurting his hand (broken? fractured? bruised? bionic? who knows!). I’m the underdog this week, but I’m hoping I can kick butt anyway.

Surly Goblins (1-2; 7/12)

Win! Matt Schaub and all of my WRs did great. Jared Allen (DE) didn’t disappoint either. It’s my first win among people I know. It feels good. I’m the favorite next week, so I hope to repeat.

Wideout Army (1-2; 5/10)

Loss. Tom Brady (QB) and Wes Welker (WR) are my heroes, but even their performance, epic as it was, didn’t produce the big W. If I’d played 2 of my benched players in lieu of the 2 WRs who did poorly, I’d have won.

Overall (11-12; 48%)

Ok. Running total. 4 wins 4 losses this week for 50%. 11 wins 12 losses for 48% overall. I’m the favorite in half the games next week.

XX cross fingers XX

Final Note

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have joined Fitocracy. I am issuing a challenge to myself.

Adrian Peterson was the #1 draft pick in nearly every league. He is a Running Back (in case you didn’t already know). He’s expected to gain a lot of yards over the year (1,000+ projected). He has currently run for 296 yards over 3 games (5 other RBs have run more so far, but they weren’t the #1 draft pick).

I am challenging myself to run 1 minute for every yard Peterson racks up this year.

There. I said it.

This is going to be rough, but I’m going to do it. I’m counting the 15 minutes I ran yesterday on the elliptical, so I’m 15/296. That’s 278 minutes (~4.8hrs) of debt to catch up and then whatever he runs this week. I’m not sure when I’ll catch up, but I will match him minute for yard.

Running, treadmill, and elliptical are all fair game for this challenge. I’ll post here each week as I progress. Wish me luck.

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I need to write more frequent blog posts so that I can cover these things individually. That being said, here we go.

Internship

Things are going smoothly at the VA. I’m getting into a bit of a rhythm and I’ve almost completed my first assessment. Just today I updated Time2Track with my hours. It looks like I’m going to get my first individual inpatient PTSD client, which simultaneously excites and terrifies me. I really want to work with people who have experienced trauma, but I’ve never really done it for real. I have a decent level of anxiety surrounding me about future sessions. Will I do or say something that makes things worse? What do I do once my client has opened up? How do I avert a crisis? These are some of the thoughts I have about working with trauma. They don’t deter me. In fact, I’ve taken a more assertive approach to the whole thing. I’m a student. A professional, yes, but a student. I am expected to make mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes. Now is the time to do so while I’m under supervision (and while it’s not my license on the line). I can do it. I will do it. But I’d be a liar if I said it was easy or it came naturally. Maybe after I’ve done it for a few years it’ll be more natural. For now, it is most definitely work. And don’t get me started on how to document it. I did mention I work for the VA, right?

Rain

It just keeps on raining here in PA. The locals swear it’s an anomaly. I’m not sure I believe them. I feel like I’m in that scene from Forrest Gump where the rain is coming from every direction. Hmm. Given my previous paragraph, perhaps that’s not such an appropriate metaphor. Still, Maggie and I were out on Friday and it rained pretty steady. And then it rained a lot. So heavy so quickly that visibility was horrible. So heavy you’re soaked before you can close your car door. So heavy we took shelter in a store and got shakes and malts to wait it out a bit. So heavy our apartment flooded. Yup. It finally happened. A big damn hurricane came blasting through last month and we got puddles. One heavy heavy downpour was apparently enough to turn our sidewalk and porch into a pond. There was no drainage. There was 2 inches of standing water at our door. The cats were riding in a sailboat. Ok, I made that last part up, but sailing cats? Cute, right? Anyway, two moldy smelling days later the landlords have replaced the padding and shampooed the carpet. Now we’re waiting for that process to dry.

Fitocracy

I’m a gaming dork. But you knew that. This website was created by gaming dorks in an effort to make exercise fun. It plays on the addiction and competitive nature of games and gaming to get you to exercise. You gain experience based on the exercises you do and you gain levels. You can join groups and enter weight loss challenges. There are even quests and achievements, though I haven’t experienced any of them yet. I’m enjoying it so far, though I’m reverting back to my rules-lawyering nature and documenting all of the walking I do at work. Granted, I do a lot of walking at work, but I’m only documenting the walking I do from building to building, which is enough that I think it counts. I’m so far away from the other interns that it’s a 5 minute brisk walk through the tunnels to get to their building. That’s 10 minutes round trip. It adds up. Anyway, I just gained a level after hitting the elliptical machine at our complex, so I’m now level 3.

Football

Maggie brought an article to my attention that I have to share since it eloquently describes how one of my fantasy teams is doing right now: God: Human Body Not Designed to Play Football. I have changed the name of my Philadelphia Noobs team to “Bangup Job” because so many of my players are out due to injury. It’s not enough that 3 of my players are out for the season, but everyone else seems to be injured as well. I even had a player I drafted as a backup for one of my injured players become injured himself. You can’t throw a dart at the injured players list without hitting someone on one of my teams.

Sleep

Who has two thumbs and needs to sleep? This guy. I’m tired when I don’t need to be and I can’t fall asleep when it’s time. I wake up tired and I’m drowsy all day long. I nod off when I shouldn’t and it’s becoming more and more of a problem. I got a nice, new, comfy pillow, which is nice, comfy, and new, but isn’t doing anything to help (other than being comfy). It is time to schedule an appointment for a sleep study. I’m 99% certain I have apnea, since everyone and my brother has it, and now that I have government employee health benefits (read: plain ol’ health insurance) I can afford to take the time to go do something about it. The time is *yawn* nigh!

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Well, this week sucked.

Team Ramrod

Lost. Adrian Peterson was my high scorer (surprise, surprise). It was a pretty straightforward loss. I’m not ashamed.

West Chester Disasters

Win. Thank you Matt Staffard! Standup performances by Vincent Jackson, Andre Johnson, and Matt Forte. I have a trade working to get a decent WR and decent RB for Vincent Jackson. Coming off a week like this, I’m hoping this turns out to be a good trade.

Philadelphia Noobs

Lost. Wow. Lots of problems with the Noobs. My #1 draft pick, Jamaal Charles is out for the season with a torn ACL. Lots of other injured players. No real replacement for Charles. I’m hoping a trade goes through for an RB. Also, I’m picking up scraps from the waivers. Next week doesn’t look good.

Hank Jr. Monday Nights

Lost. I’m out Charles for this team too 😦 My offense was so-so. My defense did well though: Roman Harper (S), James Laurinaitis (LB), and Antoine Winfield (CB) had great games. I don’t have a suitable replacement for Charles, but I’m hoping a trade goes through for an RB.

Marshawn Lynch Mob

Lost. Aaron Rodgers (QB), Michael Turner (RB), Peyton Hillis (RB), Roman Harper did great jobs. I was simply out played on this one. Also, I got beat by a girl 🙂

Schaden Freuds

Win. I had the high score for the week too! I am beginning to hate one of the scoring features for this league (my own fault). If a player’s team wins, add 5 pts to their score. If their team loses, subtract 5 points. This hurt a bit this week. Still, lots of high scorers. QBs did well, a high scoring RB in Peyton Hillis, crap for my WRs, great head coach scores (all won) and decent scoring on my team defenses.

Surly Goblins

Lost. Close. If the damn Pats hadn’t shut down Antonio Gates (TE) I’d have won. He didn’t catch a single pass. Double coverage all night long. Also, I don’t know how to pick the guys that are going to do well each week. If any of the 3 people on my bench had replaced any of the others I started (at their respective positions), I would have won. We’re talking a loss by less than 5 points.

Two wins. Five losses. 28% win rate this week. 6 wins 7 losses total; that’s a 46% win rate so far. Meh, I’ll take it for now.

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Quick update on my teams this week. Also, I added a team, you know, because I could. Keep in mind that the points are relative to the leagues.

Surly Goblins

The Goblins lost 86-144 (all points rounded up). It was a crap week for Schaub. He hurt me all over the place. I played against Aaron Rodgers (QB), Matt Forte (RB), and Calvin Johnson (RB) who all had great games. My top Goblin player was Andre Johnson (WR) with 15.5 points, while my underperformer was LeGarrette Blount (RB) who scored a measly 1.5 pts (projected 11.21). Really, a lot of my guys underperformed and a lot of my opponent’s guys did better than expected.

Team Ramrod

Had a bye week this week. Still, I had the highest score of all 7 teams with 123. Drew Brees (QB) and Mike Tolbert (RB) were my top guys with Dallas Clark (TE) bringing up the rear. Man they miss Manning out in Indy.

West Chester Disasters

Won 110-97. It was a pretty close game, but I’ll take it! Top guys were Matt Forte and Andre Johnson. Sadly, I benched Matt Stafford (QB) who scored 32.5 pts compared to Schaub’s 4.1. SCHAUB!!!

Philadelphia Noobs

Lost 121-145. 😦 It was looking good for a while, until I realized my opponent still had 6 guys left to play. He also had Rodgers. This was just poorly thought out. All my standout players were benched and I started a safety and a linebacker who didn’t play due to injuries. Injuries. Speaking of injuries, 3 of my players on the team are out for the season: Peyton Manning (QB; neck), Jon Beason (LB; torn achilles), and Eric Berry (S; torn ACL). All of them were top tier players and early picks based on their positions. It’s a shame really. I have 2 players on injury reserve (IR) so hopefully they’ll pay off later. Still, the Noobs aren’t looking so hot right now. Here’s hoping Schaub redeems himself next week.

Hank Jr. Monday Nights

Nice clean win 183-145. I had one starter that didn’t play due to an injury and I was up against Michael Vick (QB). Still, it was Mike Tolbert (RB) who had a hell of a game with 3 TDs. Sadly, I should have started my back up QB Chad Henne, who outscored Schaub dramatically (32.5 to 7.8). Live and learn.

Marshawn Lynch Mob

My new team this week. It is a high scoring league with TDs earning 10 pts (rather than the usual 6) and sacks/interceptions earning 6 points (rather than the usual 2-3). Basically, big plays are worth big points. Lynch Mob won 252-217. I have Rodgers in this league and he paid off! Terrell Suggs (LB/DE) also had a hell of a game with 5 tackles and 3 sacks. The rest of the starters did pretty well overall with my stud-to-dud safety Eric Berry taking up a starter spot and not playing.

Fantasy Gods Schaden Freuds

Corny name, I know, but they’ve been added to this week’s schedule. I’ll see about a better name later. Anyway, I’m trying out a franchise league a week late. It’s a bit different since you start more players, including more QBs. There are 8 “owners” and each of us manages 3 “teams.” We start one player at QB, RB, WR, TE, K, D/ST, DFlex (any IDP), and HC (Head Coach) per team (so 3 of each of those). It’ll be interesting to see how that turns out. We’re set to autopick on Wed. Scoring is similar to the Lynch Mob league above. I’m going QB, RB, HC, and D/ST heavy and picking at least a top tier for each of the other positions. Wish me luck.

That’s it for this week. Seven teams total. Five Six played this week. Three Four wins and two losses. That’s a 60% 67% win rate across all my teams. Not too shabby for my first year.

Edit

So, apparently, after the draft of my new team we retroactively pit our starters against each other. Turns out I won the first round 367-309 (I told you it was high scoring). The top scorer had a score of 540! Also, after a brief Facebook survey, I have a new team name: Schaden Freuds (a play on Schadenfreude and, well, Sigmund Freud). My plan mostly worked. I have Aaron Rodgers and Michael Vick as 2 of my QBs and Cam Newton (who had a great first week) as my third. I have strong, but not elite WRs and 2 strong TEs. My RBs are kind of wanting though. Well, I have a couple decent guys, but one is likely to be out next week. Decent D/STs and strong HCs (Packers, Steelers, and Jets coaches). Time to prune and prepare the team for this week. Wish me luck.

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I’ve had several things on the mind lately and I thought I’d put them all in one place. Here we go.

Tomorrow morning is 9/11/11. It’s been 10 years. My flashbulb memory of that morning has me being woken up around 9am-just before the second tower was struck-by my roommate Grant, who had just gotten out of the shower and was getting ready for class. We were in White College dorm room 300something at MSU in Murray, KY. I was a sophomore that year.

We watched the TV and I turned on NPR on my clock radio, which I would later take to work with me, and listened to the news as it was continually updated. We were speechless. We listened as news and video of the towers being struck was aired and as we were updated on the crash at the Pentagon. I checked my email and found several emails from friends and classmates talking about the situation. I remember receiving an email from a professor cancelling class for the day. I also remember talking on AIM with some high school friends about it. I didn’t know anyone personally in the towers, but there were so many people in the dorms who did. It was a confusing and sobering time for sure.

I don’t plan on exploring how the country has or hasn’t changed in the past decade. I’ll leave that to the news casters and professional bloggers. My goal is to share my own experience at that time and hope that it leads you to think about where you were 10 years ago. Maybe even consider who you were 10 years ago. Then I was a music major and marching band dork. Today I’m very nearly a psychologist who hasn’t played the trumpet in almost 6 years. It’s amazing what can happen in a decade.

On to other thoughts.

Next week starts our first rotation at internship. Rotations are a lot like what med students go through in their degree process while residents at hospitals. I’ll be doing one thing for 4 months, then switching to something else for 4 months, etc. I have 3 rotations like that. We decide which ones we’re interested in on Monday. For the most part my interests haven’t changed since I applied. I’m very interested in PTSD and plan on signing up for inpatient and outpatient rotations that give me opportunities for that. I’m especially interested in military sexual trauma (MST), which is offered as part of a minor outpatient rotation.

Other interests include biofeedback and hypnosis, an intensive assessment rotation with an emphasis on Rorschach, primary care (mostly working as a consultant within the colocated collaborative care model. I’ll be doing a lot of screening and some crisis work), and severe mental illness (SMI) psychosocial rehabilitation (less interested in the SMI part and more in the specific skills I’d learn while on the rotation). I was originally interested in taking the neuropsych rotation, but I wouldn’t be able to do several of the minor rotations I’ve listed above because neuro is a major rotation. I’ve been told that I can sit in on some of the neuro seminars and stuff like that, which I didn’t get in my practicum experience, so I think it’s win-win. I won’t have to do any neuro assessments (which I’m already familiar with) but I can learn about types of dementia and other cognitive diseases and disorders.

More thoughts.

Peyton effing Manning. He and a handful of other players are ruining me. If you’ve paid any attention at all to football in the last week (or even general news I’d imagine), then you know Manning had neck surgery and will likely be out for 2-3 months (which is essentially the whole season). Along with him are a slew of players across my teams (really, most of them are on the same fantasy team) that have either been traded and are currently teamless (David Gerrard, QB; Jeff Reed, K), have become injured themselves (Marques Colston, NO, WR; Rashad Jennings, Jac, RB), or are suspended (Will Smith, NO, DE). I’ve had to release, bench, and/or replace these guys with the slim pickings left after the draft. I’m sure some guys will show up on waivers, but for now, I have few options available to me. *sigh*

Even more thoughts.

I’m really starting to miss marching band. I’m living vicariously through Facebook friends posting pics and talking about drill, but it’s not the same. I dropped Maggie off at the local university a couple weeks ago and the pit and color guard were rehearsing outside. It made me feel so nostalgic. While I’m extremely happy with where I am in life and my career now, a very small part of me wonders where I would be today had I continued with my music degree. Also, I miss ska. I’ve been listening to Reel Big Fish and The Aquabats on iTunes lately and it makes me miss being on stage and having fun. Apparently, some of the Brass Smacker songs are on youtube. Where did I put that cd?…

Still more thoughts.

The weather here is nice today. It’s sunny. It’s the first time I’ve needed to use sunglasses in 2-3 weeks. Everyone in the area tells me that all this rain is a fluke and mostly due to the hurricanes, but that’s apparently only partially true. We got a lot of rain here before Irene came along and dumped more. It’s a wet Summer/Fall. Fall!!! Fall is here/coming soon! I really like Fall and it’s Maggie’s favorite season as well. I’m looking forward to bundling up outside and going to local events and seeing how West Chester does Halloween.

Final thoughts.

I want to go to a pro ball game. Local options include the Phillies, Eagles, and Flyers. The closest pro teams to Louisville were Cincinnati and Nashville. People are much more adamant about cheering for their sports teams when there are pro teams around. Back home we cheered mostly for college teams because that’s what we had available (I’m also jealous of several friends who are attending the UK game today). I’ve always been interested in sports, but I never followed them very closely. I’d pick a team or two each year to cheer for or follow and that’d be it. Fantasy football and proximity to some pro teams have gotten me more interested and involved. Also, I have no gaming outlet (other than Guild Wars) and most/all of my intern friends are interested in sports. Not all of our conversations have to be about psychology 🙂

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