Saturday, May 1, 2010

I Win

OK, here's the Wednesday Night/Thursday Morning After Action Report.

I did it! I puttered about the DaveCave all day, stayed awake all afternoon, and fell asleep sometime during the 11 O'clock News! I did not wake up at 0300...instead I was roused by the alarm clock at 0600!

The snow stopped falling and the skies parted, revealing bright blue hues that illuminated the new snow and began the thawing/melting cycle. All this before noon.

All morning I toiled away...picking up, doing dishes, recycling, snapping a few more pictures of the CorduroyPlanet Beachball. For lunch I made Sausage, Olive and Mushroom Pizza (with homemade crust, natch). I heard the Truckee snowplows go by twice, so there's another berm to blow.

The weather continues to throw monkey wrenches into my well oiled plans. SturgeUrge and I were going to Plan B Friday...the tides were ripe for sturgeon fishing...the weather? More suited to World Championship Kite Flying!

I've been trying to gather some fishing intel since Sunday. It's been a frustrating, fruitless task because nobody is going out fishing because the winds have been off the hook, Small Craft Warnings for everywhere we'd like to fish...and the forecast says they'll stay off the hook through Saturday.

Making the most of it all, I'll get the chores done around the DaveCave before I head down to the Ancestral Digs. I'll spend the week catching up with chores down there, before heading back uphill for Jerry's Fish Camp-Take Two. SturgeUrge and I plan on sturgeon fishing Monday.

This year, I'm planting some tomatoes, squash, and melons at the Ancestral Digs. Basil and arugula lead the parade of herbs. Also on the docket...building a new center console and bait tank/reversible pilot's seat for my Boston Whaler. More camping at the coast means more time in the boat...and more dungeness crab on the table! Halibut fishing should bust open in San Francisco Bay in May. We're hoping we'll see the winds abate in May and June so we can get out on the Pacific for some Wild Chinook Salmon, too.

There's plenty of carpentry to do as well. SturgeUrge is overdue for a new front deck, some kitchen cabinetry tweaking, and some siding on the back of the house...and a new parking space is called for, too.

At the Ancestral Digs, there's some electrical to upgrade, some phone and data lines to upgrade, plumbing, irrigation, and some fence repairs...drywall...painting...

Gee, I'm already tired just writing it down! I need a nap!

D'oh! I'm not going there...none of this "one step forward, two steps back" stuff this year. I'm going to win the BodyClock War! This year, I've gone with "Shock and Awe", and I'm rallying from my early setbacks...I won my first skirmish last night, I'm gonna ride the momentum into Victory Circle!

Props and thanks to my Landlord, who blew the berm when he got home from skiing while I finished writing today's post! Thanks Mr Conductor!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Circadian Rhythm Method

The Circadian Rhythm is the clockwork of mammalian life. This 24 hour cycle of endocrine secretions runs the body for maximum efficiency...hormone levels rising and falling in harmony to guide the body to meet the day's demands as well as keep the body ready to reproduce for the survival of the species.

There's plenty of complex stuff going on inside us all to keep us running like a well tuned machine. This is why I have such a hard time resetting my BodyClock every spring, even though eons of evolution want my body to be in step with the Sun. Doing a little light research (read Wikipedia), I haven't been able to find any helpful hints for the task at factoid did jump off the page however!

In 2007, the World Health Organization announced that working the graveyard shift would be listed as a 'probable' cause of cancer! Whoa Nelly!

Scary stuff! Still I'm making progress now. Last week I was going to bed before noon and waking up at 7 or 8PM, and taking a power nap at 3 or 4AM. The past few nights, I've been waking up later. 3:30 AM and 1:30AM (thanks to the new winter storm blowing in!) Even though my body's telling me it's Nap Time at 10:45AM, I'm calling this a move in the desired direction.

I'll win this war, I always do. This year I want to wrap it up in a week...not the month I usually take to get right.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

After Action Report

0530 Tuesday
Well, if you consider layin' about surfing the 'Net for weather data to be actual action...

I've lost last night's skirmish in the BodyClock Reset War. Gusty winds woke me from my unplanned nap. The winds freshened for three hours after I awoke at 0130, then the power flickered four times in two minutes around 0440...amazingly it stayed on!

The latest look at the Mountaintop Sensors show the peak gusts may have passed. The top of Slide Mountain El.9650, is showing 70 gusting to 95, while the top of Squaw El.8700, shows 65 with gusts to 120+

Slide's numbers are easing...down from 90 with gusts to 120, while Squaw's are still inching up from 60 with 100+ gusts. The Reno AFD says the wind will blow all day..the Wind Advisory expires at 5PM tonight, then the Winter Weather Advisory kicks in until 9AM Wednesday.

I tuned in Sacramento's CBS Television Newscast. and they're doing a bunch of live remotes of rain, wind and downed trees across the Big Valley. They opened with the Weather, it being all telegenic and all...Sacramento's NWS Office jumped the shark and issued a Winter Storm Warning through 11PM Tuesday. Reno's Office says the Eastside (venue for Jerry Otto's Fish Camp) won't get hammered, and stands pat with Advisories...check that, Reno's upgraded to High Wind Warnings 'till 5PM now (0637PDT)

0648 Tuesday
The Sun rises earlier through the miracle of Digital Video than it does for unaided human eyes...looking at the webcams around the region, shows a bunch of dry scenes...strangely, the radar says it should be falling at the DaveCave, and has for better than two hours...lookin' out the window, it's a dry front porch.

From my position as the lowly Rear Guard in the BodyClockWar, it's looking like a steep uphill battle to wind the stem back to sleeping all night...sigh...

Wow! Power's flickering again at 0700, and the Local TV News is showing live Skype Video of wet roads in it comes!

D'oh! The snow is starting to fall at the DaveCave...7:08AM...Good Night Dear Readers..I'll just pull the White Flag up over my head and close my eyes now...I don't have the energy to wave it this morning.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Springing Forward Again

First Night
It's Sunday night...I woke up sans alarm clock at 4PM. I didn't fret over getting a few more winks, because I don't have to work another Graveyard Shift until the 2010/2011 Ski Season begins.

On tap this week is Jerry Otto's Fish Camp. SturgeUrge and I are joining Jerry and the boys for his annual Camp-Out Kickoff near Markleeville, on the Eastern Side of the High Sierra. Typical of an El Niño year, a late Winter Storm is forecast to plague us through the week.

The inclement weather won't amount to anything compared to my battle to reset my Body Clock! Twice a year, I throw caution to the wind and voluntarily reset my body's internal clock when I opt to become a Graveyard Groomer every Winter, and a normal person every Spring. Bad weather may have us cooped up in our tents, but catching up on my reading won't be all bad...though it's just gonna be more procrastinating...

You see, resetting my body clock is easy in the Fall...go to work at midnight, and you come home and collapse...instant reset. Spring's reset has always been more dodgy...

Tuesday 0300
I was up all day Monday once the alarm got me up at 0600! I spent the day Spring Cleaning the DaveCave...I've got company coming Tuesday night, so I'm finally making time to clean up a year's worth of clutter! The DaveCave has become my "Closet Away From Home" since I've been summering at the Ancestral easy to let stuff pile up...add a new Laundry Center Project (halfway completed) and suddenly I'm a Hoarding Reality Show on DiscoveryHealth!

I laid down with the internet and a cocktail around 7:30PM and woke up at 0130 when the wind associated with the oncoming snowstorm rattled everything on the front porch. I poured out the melted drink, and I threw on some long pants and shoes and scurried upstairs to put the pickup into the garage before the precip started. It's an hour and a half since I got up and the winds are really starting to thrash out there.

Are they ever! The top of Slide Mountain El.9650, is showing 90 gusting to 120, while the top of Squaw El.8700, shows 60 with gusts to 100+ Wild and woolly, yet still dry...aaaand this brings me to "the moral of the story" as the old cartoon chestnut used to say. It's now 0320 and I'm wide awake...alert even...

So begins my annual "Battle of the Body Clock" wherein I usually surrender going in...muddling about in my newly earned freedom, sleeping "on demand" and taking a month or so to "normalize" my sleep schedule, chalking it up to: "I earned it"

Jerry's Fish Camp starts Wednesday for us, It could be just the ticket for this BodyClock reset dealio...stay tuned.

11:30AM Tuesday
SturgeUrge called, he was just off the phone with Jerry. Wiser Heads prevailed, Jerry has been at Fish Camp all week, and has been doing tons of fishing...and zero catching, so he suggested that we come over for the week of the 9th to the 12th. I heartily agreed (anything to drag out the Spring Clean Up! I told SturgeUrge that I wouldn't be surprised to see the next El Niño -fueled winter storm to blow in about then!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Where To Begin

Reality? Where to end is more on my mind today...(I'm still up Tuesday afternoon, drat it all!)

Ski season ends Sunday. Thinking back over this first year of CorduroyPlanet, I'm sorry to admit that I didn't pen enough nuts and bolts grooming stuff...instead I dithered about...spewing about fishing, days off, and gadgets. I'll need to work on my discipline going forward!

Oh, I did do a half-dozen Grooming 101 blogs, but I fear I didn't do nearly enough material to demystify Slope Grooming for the uninitiated. This is a sad state of affairs, as Grooming is a fairly esoteric discipline to the civilian ranks. Mountain Folks, Pass Holders and Resort Workers grok the world of corduroy making by the very act of osmosis...being around it day in and day out, makes the bailiwick pedestrian, familiar, and ordinary. There's so much to it, that I know I won't tire of telling my story anytime in the foreseeable future. Herein lies the rub...I've been doing this for 30 much of it is second nature now...part of me...what I am...what I do.

It's easy to miss the forest for the trees when you're a forest dweller. In a few months, about the time the light changes towards the autumnal, I'll get the itch again, and I'll bust out of the gates, firing an all cylinders...covering the nuts and bolts with renewed vigor.

This space will still publish five days a week, though the focus will soften even more...more cuisine, fishing, gardening, history, gizmos and politics will fill the days until the snow flies once again...I'll try to keep it anchored to My Mountain and Grooming...but I am a "Go with the Flow" Guy!

I'm turning off the laptop now, one more try at some shuteye before I head up the hill to work tonight. Just let me thank you all for paying me any mind at all...I'm humbled knowing you're out there clicking on my shit. Thank you all.