Does anyone know a good ophthalmologist in the DC area?

June 28, 2008, 10:52 AM

Does anyone know a good ophthalmologist in the DC area? It’s that time again, as it’s been three years since the last time my glasses were updated. And I’m not about to go to Augusta Eye Associates again, for reasons of distance. However, if you are in the Staunton/Waynesboro/Augusta County area, I highly recommend these folks. I would always see Dr. Patel.

So now I’m wondering what people think. I live in the Silver Spring/Wheaton area in Maryland, and I work in Dupont Circle. And I’m wondering if anyone has any recommendations. I’ve found a few names while doing some research, and I’m wondering if any of the names you all hopefully will give me match what I found and turn up good recommendations, or absolutely-positively-hell-no recommendations. And no, I’m not giving out my list in order to not box myself in, in case I missed anyone.

And lastly, I am only referring to ophthalmologists – doctors with MDs. I am not looking to go to an optometrist (doctors with ODs). So what do people think? Let me know…

Categories: Personal health

What are you talking about? Coffee’s supposed to taste like sludge!

June 5, 2008, 10:50 PM

It’s funny… at work, the coffee drinkers have for the most part gone into two camps. There are the ones who would happily make it so strong that the spoon stands up, and those who like weak coffee.

I’m part of the “sludge” crowd. There is a dedicated group of us who gets to the Bunn-O-Matic in the morning and make strong coffee. Some people describe it as being like castor oil. I prefer the term “sludge”, myself. And if anyone asks why I like the coffee like sludge, I just smile. And not just a regular smile, either. It’s that kind of smile that’s so much so that it works muscles all down your neck and on your chest. The I’ve-had-too-much-caffeine smile. I love it.

Of course, I always cut myself off at noon. No more coffee past noon, which paves the way for a nap on Metro some evenings. Yesterday after work, I really must have been pooped – I fell asleep before Brookland-CUA, and next thing I knew, it was Glenmont. Usually, if I fall asleep on Metro, I briefly wake up around Fort Totten or Takoma, and then also around Forest Glen or Wheaton. Usually if it’s Wheaton, I end up staying awake to Glenmont, because I don’t see any point of nodding off again, being so close.

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I wish I was in Stuarts Draft today…

February 23, 2008, 8:56 AM

Yeah, I wish I was in Stuarts Draft today. The reason is that up until yesterday, this weekend was going to be spent in Stuarts Draft. Then on Friday, I started coming down with something. It started Friday morning, when I had a very painful sore throat and a bit of a cough, but otherwise, no problem. By the end of the day at the office, I was pretty much feeling like I was sick. I notified all concerned that unless I felt really good come Saturday morning, that I was not going to make the trip down. And just as well. Yes, my mother would probably take good care of me if I made the trip sick, but I figure that if I’m going to be miserable all weekend, I’d at least rather be miserable in my own bed.

I figure I probably caught this one at the MVA on Tuesday when I got my Maryland license plates. That was about the only major deviation from my usual routine where I would be sitting in relatively close company with people I normally didn’t spend any time around. Realize it’s mostly the same people every day on the bus and the Metro. Then it’s definitely the same folks at work. So yeah, MVA seems the likely culprit.

And meanwhile, I now need to figure out another weekend to go to Stuarts Draft.

Categories: Personal health

I feel good now, for the most part…

September 4, 2007, 6:13 AM

There’s still a little bit of residual congestion going on, but otherwise, I feel good, and I once again express my gratitude that this happened over a long weekend, because it means I won’t miss any work over this.

Of course, it means that I am so behind on some of the stuff that I wanted to do for this weekend. What I did accomplish was at home – I cleaned the bathroom, and I did the laundry. I didn’t get to go grocery shopping, which means there’s still not much food in the house. Methinks I’ll hit up Shoppers tonight.

Still, I’m so glad to be feeling better again. Being sick just plain old sucks.

Categories: Personal health

No better weekend than a long weekend to be sick, I suppose…

September 3, 2007, 5:44 PM

Following my day at Potomac Mills on Saturday, I was sick as a dog on Sunday. Of course, I guess there’s no better time to get sick than on a long weekend, where there is no work to miss. Goodness knows there’s no way I would have been able to go to work today if it were a regular day.

Meanwhile, everything’s going back to normal now, as the fever I’d been running has been burning off, and the sore throat has been going away, and the headache-inducing cough has been getting less and less frequent. And the lymph nodes on the right side of my neck have gone back to normal.

In all the times I’ve been sick, though, I’ve never had “swollen glands”. It was weird. Thursday it started higher up, like it was some kind of food debris that I’d failed to brush out in my lower right molars. Then the next morning, the teeth were fine, but it had gone further down into the neck, and was slightly tender to the touch, and definitely a different feel – harder than usual. Then Saturday, the throat started to kick in, being scratchy and sensitive, and then Sunday, it was full blast – fatigue, throat, glands, fever, cough, headache, congestion… you name it. No fun. About all I did all day was sleep. Sleep, get up, feel bad, go back to sleep, get up, feel bad, go back to sleep… it was a never-ending cycle.

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Categories: Personal health

Look what I found!

May 7, 2007, 12:06 PM

I’m going through and cleaning stuff out in preparation for the big move to DC, and I found this:

Mrs. Maidt's fourth grade class, 1990-1991

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In case this month’s splash page photo shocked you…

May 2, 2007, 9:07 AM

In case the May splash page photo shocked you, where I had considerably less hair than usual, I can explain. Like many men, I am slowly but surely losing my hair. I just have to look at my father to see what the future has in store for me.

This photo actually marks the beginning of what I consider to be a major about-face in what I’ve called my “hair policy”. You see, when it was only a little thin spot, I used the airbrush tool to fill it in. The result was hardly noticeable. Then as the hairline continued to recede, it became like what happens when people lie, as you have to tell more lies to cover for the original lie, and eventually it snowballs out of control. Likewise for the photos. I’ve been “fixing” the bald spot as it’s gotten bigger and bigger, and it’s not exactly been easy to do.

Looking back at my splash pages, my first chop job was January 2004. Then February 2004 was genuine, so you can see what I was covering. Then the next time you got to see the hairline untouched was for November 2005, where I accidentally “outed” my receding hairline in the Thnikkaman costume. I also let a genuine one go through in May 2006 with the elevator shot.

But now I’ve decided to go natural on here, since editing the hair has started to get somewhat cumbersome as it’s become harder and harder to hide it. And this is the right thing to do anyway, especially since even I wasn’t convinced that some of the airbrush jobs looked all that authentic. Some yes, others no. Depended on how much hair I had to give myself.

So now I’ve come clean about the hair. I feel better now.

Update: All of the photos where the hairline was manipulated were replaced with the original unmanipulated versions during a site overhaul in mid 2012.

Categories: Myself, Schumin Web meta

I am moving to Washington DC!

April 18, 2007, 6:30 PM

I am happy to announce that my days at Wal-Mart are over, as I have finally found a job in Washington DC! I will be working for Food & Water Watch in Northwest DC. Needless to say, I am excited.

I would like to thank the following people for their roles in helping me get there… first of all, thank you to my family for putting me through college, and to the student advising people at JMU for getting me out of the College of Business and into the Public Administration program. Thank you to all of my friends in Augusta County, etc. for their encouragement and support whenever I started feeling discouraged. Thank you to all of my friends in the DC area who also lent me encouragement and support in my quest to find gainful employment up in DC.

And in an odd twist of things, I’d like to thank Dorinda Wilson-Bowers and Lee Pinheiro at Wal-Mart… for firing me. Yes, I got fired from Wal-Mart on March 31 for what I consider specious reasons, which we won’t go into here. However, since Wal-Mart had become a very hostile and unpleasant place to be in my last month or so there, after the initial shock of getting fired (I’d never been fired before!), it was a great relief to be fired, because it meant that I no longer had to deal with this situation that was making my life a living hell, and where I used to dread coming into work every day. However, from the moment that they said to me, “You’re fired,” I made it my job to find a new job. And as you can see, I found one, and as it turns out, getting fired was the best thing to ever happen to me.

And throughout the time I was looking for a new job, I’d especially like to thank my friend Katie Shapiro, who really helped me through the day I got fired, and constantly kept me going like a true friend.

And to all of you that I’m leaving behind in Stuarts Draft, Staunton, Waynesboro, Harrisonburg, etc., thanks for the memories.

This time change, unlike most, has me a bit on edge…

March 10, 2007, 10:17 AM

Unless you live in Arizona, the United States changes its clocks twice a year – once in the beginning of April and once at the end of October, going onto and off of daylight savings. Okay. Routine. Now, however, with this new energy bill that got passed, it’s the middle of March that we go onto daylight savings, and early November (I believe) that we go back to standard time. As a result, it just seems awfully early to be changing over to daylight savings, partly because it is.

Usually this is so routine. We change the clocks and I’m like, okay. And life goes on. But due to the earlier date, I’m running myself ragged on it. I’m fairly confident that my computers will change on their own, and I’m also confident that my cell phone will change on its own. I’ve already changed my alarm clock. Still, I’ve been obsessing over this, worried that somehow I’ll have forgotten to change something, and end up late for work tomorrow.

This, folks, is a partial explanation as to why I’ve found a few hairs coming in white as of late. I’m running myself silly over smaller issues.

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Categories: Events, Myself

Also, do you ever have this?

January 20, 2007, 12:37 AM

Some nights when you don’t get enough sleep, getting up can be a whole lot of fun. This is what happened this morning. The real alarm clock goes off. Snooze bar gets whacked, and I get a few more minutes of shuteye. Repeat a few times. Thirty minutes past the first blast of the alarm clock, my cell phone alarm goes off.

This, by the way, is deliberate. My real alarm clock is within arm’s reach. Then my cell phone is on my desk, and therefore out of reach from the bed. Thus to kill all the alarms, I have to be fully alert.

So I tried to drown out the cell phone. Then my regular alarm goes off again. Snoozed. The cell phone also automatically snoozed, thereby going silent. I then start negotiating with myself. Seriously. I look at the time in big numbers on my alarm clock, and I think about how much wiggle room I have time-wise, and whether I can still catch a few more winks. I make my determination, and then either snooze or get up. So we look, and it’s like this: DEE DEE DEE DEE DEE *whack*.

Then of course actually getting completely up on those kinds of mornings requires a can or two of Coke Zero. Once we clear that, I’m usually good for the day, though. I just find it amazing that I found myself negotiating with myself over about fifteen minutes of sleep…

Categories: Amusing, Dreams, Myself

When food attacks?

December 22, 2006, 10:28 PM

I have a feeling that I must have eaten something that was not quite right today, because around 3:00, I started feeling really bad, and became somewhat feverish. I felt really bad driving home, but still went right back out after work to take care of some stuff.

At least I’m not going to miss any work on account of this little bout of food poisoning, unlike what happened last time, when I took my first and only sick day from work. While I was out, the fever broke, I cooled right down, and life was once again good.

Of course, the thing that always gets me when it comes to eating something that ends up attacking back is not knowing exactly what the culprit was. Everything I ate today was just wonderful, at least from my point of view at the time. So who knows.

If anyone knows the high value I place on personal hygiene, it’s got to be…

September 6, 2006, 1:11 PM

If anyone really knew what a high value I place on personal hygiene, I’d have to say it would have to be the people at the Wal-Mart in Woodstock. I go there on my way home from Washington, and that’s usually when I stock up on all of such personal-hygiene type items.

Seriously, I actually go out of my way to avoid having to shop at the store I actually work at. Trust me, 40 hours inside that place in a week is plenty.

Still, ask the overnight staff at Woodstock. I come in there on my way home from a DC trip, and get eight or nine bottles of shampoo, 30 bars of soap, or a few bottles of body wash when I determine I’m starting to run low. Likewise, I’ve been known to get a few boxes of toothpaste refills (I like Mentadent), a few bars of deodorant, and flosser refills. I like to really stock up when I go shopping. It’s a habit I got when I was in college, and I haven’t outgrown it.

Reason I mention all this is because I’m starting to get to the end of my last bar of deodorant, and am trying to figure out if it will make it all the way to next Tuesday, when I make my next DC trip. So it’s currently an issue that’s really on my mind.

You’ll notice one thing that’s not on my list, though: cologne or after shave. I have no use for scented water. That and one of my many pet peeves is people who use too much cologne. If I can smell you coming a mile away by your cologne, you’re wearing too much. There’s one particular coworker of mine that does this, and you can catch the scent and realize, oh, that’s (name) coming while he’s still a long way off.

So all in all, three cheers for personal hygiene, because the alternative is to smell bad. And it’s never pleasant to have to deal with stinky people.

Categories: Myself, Shopping

Being sick is no fun…

July 30, 2006, 12:58 AM

Let me tell you, being sick straight-up sucks. I don’t know how I got it, but I was out of commission on Saturday. This marks the first time I have called out sick to work since 1999 when I dislocated a shoulder, and the first time ever with Wal-Mart.

This that I had would be your typical “sick”, too. I had a fever, I had a headache, I was wobbly, and I felt like I had weights on both feet. I spent much of the day in bed.

Now, though, I think we’re on the road to recovery. I’ve been sweating, which means that the fever’s going away, and I’m just feeling better overall. I don’t like missing work, and so I’m glad to be feeling better again.

Categories: Personal health

I don’t know where that hand has been…

July 3, 2006, 8:35 AM

I’m going to say it straight up: I don’t like handshakes. And here’s why: I don’t know where that hand has been, and most people aren’t as meticulous about their hand washing as I am. Whenever someone shakes my hand, my first instinct is to find a restroom and re-wash the hand that was shaken. I also have to suppress the urge to smell the hand that they just shook (to see how dirty that hand was) right in front of them, and to wait until after they’re out of sight before going into “damage control” mode.

I don’t know why it is, but I don’t like handshakes for that reason. I don’t know whether the person whose hand I’m shaking washed their hands when they last used the restroom, or what that hand has been up to and into since the last time it saw soap.

The reason I mention this is because I was over in Charlottesville on Sunday night, doing some night photography over in the Corner District, which borders the University of Virginia. The bars and restaurants in the Corner are popular places for UVA students to go to get “polluted”, shall we say. Now when I’m photographing with the tripod, I’m far more noticeable than when I’m photographing without it, since I take up more sidewalk space, and have to be more stationary as a result. So I get far more attention than otherwise. And the males, some of whom smell of beer, more often than not want to shake my hand. It would be quite rude to say, “I’m not touching that!” and so I just go ahead and shake. And then I feel unclean afterwards.

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Categories: Charlottesville, Myself

Gaaaaa! Get me to my vacation!

June 5, 2006, 2:08 AM

All I have to say is please, please, please let June 27 come here soon. That’s my last day at work before I take nine days off for a vacation. Because let me tell you – I need this vacation badly. I’m so in need of time off that I’m dreading coming to work each day. Yeah, it’s that serious.

And what’s funny is that I don’t even have anything major planned for this little vacation. The key is just getting away from Wal-Mart for a while. I did make sure to carefully plan the timing on this, though. June 28 through July 6 was chosen specifically to avoid two really busy periods – the first of the month, and the July 4 holiday.

The only plan I have thus far is to go to Washington DC for the Fourth of July, because Metro runs a special service pattern on that day, and I’m going to experience it for the first time in person. Otherwise, I’m open. We’ll see what I come up with.

Categories: Myself, Travel