August 28, 2007

I am addicted to work

and it is probably because I'm addicted to things like, oh, food. And shelter. So I work and work and work. I can hardly turn down a paying job if it doesn't conflict (badly) with my other paying gigs.

Unfortunately, it leads to where I am now: probably getting sick. I haven't been running like I should. I worked this whole weekend, and so didn't get run in. To be honest, I prefer to get a full eight hours of sleep rather than cut it to six in order to go run.

So I'm bicycling in to work these days. And I'm loving it, actually. The weather is good, I'm riding pretty well, and my commute time keeps dropping. But it is hell on my legs. I got to work Monday and my legs were jelly. My friend and colleague, Nico, suggested I do what he does: bike in one day, bike home the next. Nine and a half miles is quite a workout (an hour for me) and to do it twice every day is asking for joint trouble, he says.

Well, after working an eleven hour day, I left the building at exactly 8 p.m. and headed home. During the first part of the ride, down to Chambers street along the West Side Highway, I was coughing quite a bit. I brought up a lot of gunk, but at least it was coming freely. And my lungs were feeling better and better. I know I slimed myself at least once, maybe twice.

Now, keep in mind it is dark already and I've got sunglasses on because I forgot my clear riding glasses, but I won't go without eye protection. I can see just fine...mostly. I probably endanger a couple of pedestrians who, like idiots, were wandering in the bike lane as I'm going over the Brooklyn Bridge...

But I'm getting ahead of myself. I know I slimed myself because as the big clock across the river read 8:15, I passed Canal street, coughed, spit, and thought "that didn't quite hit the ground." I saw a dark blob on my sleeve and I smeared it a bit - yep. Slime. Good thing it's dark and no-one will notice.

I got home about 5 minutes 'til 9 - so 55 minutes on the bike at a "working for it" pace. Once I got home, I changed clothes...and found that the expected green smear was not green. It was red. Meaning this was more than minor spotting, this was a pretty good bleed, though not full-on hemoptysis, I don't think.

And this has all happened before: the long slow slide into illness, requiring IVs for several weeks. First the easy running gets difficult, then the coughing increases, then the sputum gets bloody. I still feel good and I'm not having to pause just walking to the subway... but I've got to increase my therapy and running and try to stave this off. I can't afford to get sick until late November, after the dance concert is over.

I also got some good news: Thunder Press will be running my Alaska trip article as a two-parter, even in its shorter, edited version. (My editor cut the epic tale from 14,000 words to 6,800; still about 5,000 words too many for Thunder Press usually.) So this is quite an honor, actually; NOBODY gets two-part articles. It also makes sense, as my article concentrates first on more mundane topics, like how the group got together and how we prepared to go to Alaska; and the second half concentrates more on the adventure itself. At some point, I'll post the expanded version of the article (and I left out a lot, too) and everyone can read it; but that may be awhile since I'm so fuckin' busy.

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