Wii? Fit. Me? Fat.

Saturday, 28 February, 2009

My sister and I spend the better part of this week going to every store in Plattsburgh looking for one item: a Wii Fit. Every time we asked no store had one in stock. We even called a Wal-Mart store that was 50 miles away, with no luck. That didn’t seem to stop us from looking, though.

Today, however, our local Wal-Mart had them in stock. My sister excitedly bought one, and brought it home. I didn’t care, either way, about playing around with it, really. She was particularly excited about it, as it seems to be a decent means of exercise in these cold days.

As she was setting it up, I toyed with the idea of creating a profile. I really didn’t needing a video game peripheral to tell me what I already knew about myself. Yes, I am a fat guy. I have no real issues with it, myself. I just didn’t want it to be displayed on the TV screen.

After watching my young nephews set up their profiles–and seeing that it didn’t display your weight unless you opted to see it–I decided to give it a go. Before I even stood on the thing, though, I was sure I wasn’t going to enjoy it.

The balance board that runs with the Wii Fit software measures your center of balance–mine is slightly to the left, if you are wondering–and your body mass index. It plumps up your poor little Mii until it looks like…well…you. It takes these readings, along with your actual age and height, and gives you a Wii Fitness age.

Mine was 41. That’s 13 years older than I am. After being chastised about my balance issues, and Wii Fit Age, I came up here to sulk. I listened, though, as my sister was obviously enjoying herself while playing some of the games (called “training” on the software).

I wandered back down to see what she was doing. She was stepping on and off the balance board in time with a whole group of Miis. This was only the second game she has played (and one that I cannot keep in time with, because I am so uncoordinated–see my Guitar Hero post).

She showed me a game which requires that you hula hoop, and asked me to try. So here I was, standing on a plastic board in the middle of the floor, gyrating my hips like there was no tomorrow. And, you know what? I actually enjoyed myself while doing it.

So, putting aside the horrors of having a video game telling you how unfit you are–I KNOW ALREADY!, and the fact that you might look a fool, gyrating as such, the Wii Fit is actually pretty fun. In the long run if it actually does help shed some pounds, it might just be redeemed as a viable piece of exercise equipment.

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T-minus seven days

Thursday, 26 February, 2009

Seven days from now–that’s March 5th– I will be leaving Plattsburgh for a couple weeks. I am going to visit my father in Port Richey, Florida. It’ll be two weeks of nice weather (hopefully), and good times (again, hopefully).

Dad moved down to Port Richey in September of last year, and he has been after someone–either my sister, or myself–to visit. I knew I would have to wait until tax return time to afford it. I bought my ticket to fly out a couple weeks back.

I just bought the return ticket the day before yesterday. That was because I was watching the fairs. To fly out (before taxes/fees, mind you) the ticket was only $29 through Allegiant Air. Plus I get to depart, and fly back into, Plattsburgh. The airport is really only two minutes from my apartment!

I will be sure to post many pictures while I am there, and maybe I will even write about the flight. It’s my first ever, and I am kind of nervous. This trip, to me, is kind of a scouting trip. If I enjoy myself, I will probably pack up and move down! There’s no telling!


My family…

Saturday, 7 February, 2009
The crest of Clan Douglas

The crest of Clan Douglas

When I was eight-years old, my mother’s father died.  I never got the chance to ask my grandfather (we called him Pépé) about the Douglas family.  I don’t know if it was that, at that point in my young life, I was uninterested in familial backgrounds.  I like to think that was it.  I mean I don’t know how many eight-year olds can tell you about their family’s past.

I say past, but, mean to reach farther than that.  Ancestry.  I know that Douglas is a Scottish name, and an important one at that.  Clan Douglas (if we are indeed a part of said clan) has a rich history that is intertwined with that of Scotland itself.  For it is said :

The history of Clan Douglas cannot be separated from the history of Scotland and the history of Scotland cannot be separated from Clan Douglas. They are one in the same!”*

Unable to find any real information, myself, I sought help from the website linked above.  I contacted their Genealogist, Melvyn Douglass, and gave him the information that I knew: my grandfather’s information, and that on his parents and grandparents–all taken from their grave stones.  Melvyn was quick to respond and is endeavoring to find out any information he can from his database.

You are probably wondering why I am showing preference to my mother’s family.  I’m not.  I am sure the Ashline Family (derived from a French family–Asselin) I’m sure has a rich past as well.  But, the Douglas side of me wins out.  I take after them more than my father’s side.  That, and my aunt (Dad’s sister) has done some work to study that side of the family.

So here’s to Melvyn Douglass, who is researching my family for me.  If not for you, I would always be wondering who I was.  More so who my ancestors were.  Thank you, Mr. Douglass!

*thanks to The Clan Douglas Society for the inspiring quote, and having Melvyn’s e-mail address!