Triggers and Reactions

problems-triggers-reactions-understanding-adI guess you never really know what will set you off and how you’ll react to it.  Triggers and reactions are probably near daily occurrences – and some are probably predictable and others can spin you around.

Some are predictable.  For me, walking by a pizza place generally means I’ll be hungry.  Walking by (as opposed to grabbing a slice) is a measure of success in managing the trigger.

Some triggers and reactions are relational.  Seeing a concert (I was at Dead and Company last weekend) usually triggers a party atmosphere where a fun time can be had.  I suppose how much fun you have is a way to measure that trigger’s impact.

Situational triggers and reactions occur as well.  No matter how tired I am when I drag into the gym I get going and the environment gets me through the hour (or so) I am there.  Although the measure could easily be the quality of the workout, I prefer to gauge the success on how I feel three hours later – if my energy or focus is better after the workout.

Other times triggers and reactions aren’t as easily defined.  The measure of success is equally ill-defined.

There are moments I can be thrown back to the morning when my father died by simply seeing an ambulance in front of a house with its doors open.  There are times I can be back on the corner my brother was hit by a car simply driving by a car accident.   Forty plus years later my reactions to these triggers are sometimes a deep breath – but rarely more than the imagery.

Other moments in time have triggers and reactions that are a bit more raw and tougher to manage and measure.  Those are the moments that will one day be a deep inhale – but today can be just about anything.

I’m not sure if measuring and managing those triggers and reactions is the best plan – but it’s what I do and sometimes it’s harder than others.

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The Dad Bod – Reason For Hope

The Dad BodNow in my 48th year of waging a battle with an expanding (and occasionally collapsing) waistline – when a friend sent me a blog about the Dad Bod being a thing, I became encouraged.  Although my friend thought it would be a great blog, it wasn’t until I saw the Dad Bod in the Huffington Post and Washington Post that I realized for those with the Dad Bod there is reason for hope.

The Dad Bod belongs to the guy who looks like he goes to the gym a few times a week, can run and has a bit of a beer gut.  According to all of the blogs and published reports, the Dad Bod says to the world, “Yeah, I go to the gym and I drink beers and I can sit down and eat 8 slices of pizza too, and enjoy it all.”

That about sums me up.

I actually enjoy going to the gym.  I try to do something active every day.  Some days more than others – I do lead an active life.  That active life includes drinking (probably slightly more than I should).  I enjoy craft beer sampling and a nice glass of scotch.  And let’s admit it, pizza is one of the major food groups.

All of that contributes to the Dad Bod.  The mentality is as we are downing that fourth slice of pizza and washing it down with a third beer we say, “I’ll do some extra CV at the gym tomorrow.”

But now us dads who like to sit back and down a few cold beers with a few shots and a handful of wings can do so with a clear conscience.  There is a sub-set (and apparently growing one) of women who kind of dig it.  For too long the Dad Bod has been relegated to the after-run pile when it comes times to make connections.

No more says the blogosphere, American journalism and those of us afflicted with the Dad Bod physique.

But I’d argue it’s also a state of mind:

You want to do the right thing:

I really don’t need anyone telling me that four slices of pizza and three beers at a single sitting is not overly healthy.  No one is there to let me know my breakfast choice of fresh fruit, peanut butter and egg whites are good choices though.  Let the Dad Bod go from time to time.

You have the best intentions:

Sitting down to eat, you didn’t plan on sampling six different craft beers – but they’re just so good and when is the next time I’ll be back here to try that new brew out of Wyoming?

Results may differ:

Just because four slices and three beers leaves you nothing but hungry doesn’t mean the rest of us will have the same result.  Although I can easily eat half a pie and half a six-pack – I really don’t want dessert (besides that would be just overkill right?).  But many with the Dad Bod would go for the chocolate cake too.

Yes, we’re more cuddly.  And it’s always a good idea for the woman to be the cuter half of the couple – the Dad Bod has served me well from my pre-dad years through my single dad years.  Now that the rest of the world has caught on, there is reason for hope in the Dad Bod world.

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The Pizza Blog

pizzaA not so hidden fact about myself is that I love pizza.  While I don’t go out-of-the-way to try every pizza place I can, given the opportunity, I’ll try a new pizza place over just about every other type of food.  The girls and I visited one of the better pizza places I’ve discovered this way recently, and 13.5 suggested the pizza blog.

We were out and about on New Year’s Day and reached about three in the afternoon and none of us had eaten lunch.  I played hockey early.  13.5 woke up late and 11.0 spent the morning with a friend.


After a brief family caucus we actually set out for tacos, but the place was closed.  That’s when I realized we were right across the street from one of the better pizza places I’ve ever visited.  So I suggested pizza.

The girls were pretty happy and 11.0 asked me how I knew about the place.

So I told her.  Back in my second go round with Cablevision, this place was not far from my office.  Some nights I would stop there and grab a slice or two before heading across two bridges to get home.  I tried the place one night out of my zeal to eat from every pizza place I pass.  I kept going back because the place was that good.

So, on the first day of 2014 I returned.  The place did not disappoint.

I am a plain pizza guy.  Sometimes Sicilian, usually triangle and rarely with anything on it.  The sauce has to be rich and tangy.  The bottom crisp enough to support the cheese and the crust with just a little crunch.

While eating, 13.5 thought I should create a pizza blog and share my pizza experiences.  Of course, there are times I have enough problems keeping this blog updated, I could not imagine keeping another one.

However, if you need a pizza recommendation, let me know.  I keep the places cataloged in my mind.

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