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The trouble with being an analyst

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

These words actually escaped my mouth on the way out of the office yesterday: "The trouble with being an analyst is that you analyze EVERYTHING!"

In this case the "everything" was my recent health things. My co-workers laughed... all being analysts themselves, and completely getting it. See, medical "differential diagnosis" isn't that different from debugging a complex computer system. Just another level beyond.

Problem with all complex systems is that the same symptoms can mean so many different things. You have to get hold of all the environmental factors and trace your way through the internals to figure it out. And even then you can be fooled. You can end up fixing things that didn't need fixing, breaking things you didn't intend to break, and not fixing the original problem!

So this morning I'm taking my list of things I had written down BEFORE last Friday's episode, along with a few additions that I made AFTER... and letting the guy with the training have at it, along with the results of the tests they did Friday.

And hoping he tells me to go back and just live my life already and stop being such an... analyst!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PENNYAN45 7/21/2010 9:04PM

    I am not an analyst, but I have on occasion been accused of being analytical.
You THINK too much!" That's always a helpful criticism. LOL.

It sounds like a good plan. We all hope for the outcome you mentioned.

emoticon emoticon

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NELLIEC 7/21/2010 5:18PM

    It is just part of your being to analyze when that is your modus operandi!

So analyze ahead and be open to alternative explanations! emoticon

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WALKINGANNIE 7/21/2010 4:10PM

    Analysis is useful - and you're a precious person rather than a machine.

Hope that the experts can put your mind at rest.


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KASEYCOFF 7/21/2010 3:41PM

    I'm with 'Kaligirl' on this one - and be sure to keep us posted - ah, post analysis, lol...

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KALIGIRL 7/21/2010 1:47PM

    Just be sure to 'test' your expert...

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THIAGRAM 7/21/2010 12:14PM

  My dear wonderful hubby analyzes EVERYTHING! I have found it most helpful. At times it really has it's downsides, but I do believe the good outweighs the bad! We really should open our eyes, look around us and then act and undo, and redo and do the do!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANDI571 7/21/2010 9:50AM

    Here I just thought I was a worrier. Who knew I was an analyst? emoticon

Praying everything is ok. emoticon

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PEGGYJEAN13 7/21/2010 9:01AM

    Are you saying you have a tendency to make it a bigger problem than maybe it really is? Forgive me but I'm not good at analyzing!

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ANONALEE 7/21/2010 8:40AM

    As my training therapist told me ... "You can't not know what you know, can't not see what you see." For those of us with an analytical bent (whatever form that takes), we have to live with the complexities and the ambiguities that result. Which is both a blessing and a curse. Hoping you're right about your symptoms being "one of those things."

Cheers, Debra
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PMFISH 7/21/2010 8:13AM

    The mind is a wonderful thing. Sometimes we use it to our determent and the same for our body. Give the body good nutrition, even if you have to use supplements, and keep it moving.

Hope you have an excellent report.


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MSLZZY 7/21/2010 8:10AM

    Good luck with that! Analysts still....analyze! emoticon

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Movies not to watch while your child is deployed

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Messenger

'nuff said.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATRISNA 7/22/2010 10:40AM

    I didn't watch that one either. Yesterday I was watching some of those videos on youtube (iraq electric avenue) of soldiers fooling around because they are bored. Some were funny and they made me smile but I kept thinking I hope these guys are all still okay.

Even watching them patroling I realized it was probably similar to when my son was over there. May God bless your son and keep him and his unit safe. Still praying for all the troops.

Comment edited on: 7/22/2010 10:41:40 AM

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WALKINGANNIE 7/21/2010 4:14PM

    emoticon emoticon

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PEGGYJEAN13 7/21/2010 8:58AM

    I'll watch out for that one!

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ANONALEE 7/21/2010 8:41AM


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MSLZZY 7/21/2010 7:37AM

    Guess I didn't miss much! emoticon

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PENNYAN45 7/21/2010 7:32AM

    I can't watch those shows even without having a loved one deployed.

emoticon to you and your son.

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ANDI571 7/20/2010 11:20PM

    Do you watch the show Army Wives? I love that show, and it really shows us what the families like you go through during this time. It makes me appreciate even more the sacrifices of our military and their families. emoticon

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Portions on the plate

Monday, July 19, 2010

All those things you hear about stocking your kitchen with smaller plates and training yourself to recognize portion sizes with your hand, fist, etc. are a good thing. Because, when you go out to eat, like all the news tells you... those portion sizes in restaurants? Bigger all the time. And those portion size rules of thumb work.

My daughter in law and I went out to dinner on Saturday, kind of in honor of my son's birthday, even though he couldn't be with us. We're following those orders he left us to check up on each other. emoticon

We chose a relatively healthy restaurant: Olive Garden. I figured I get the salad undressed and watch my portion size, I'll be fine. And I picked a nice, healthy options: capellini pomodoro (angel hair pasta in a tomato-basil sauce). I had a craving for pasta, it sounded perfect.

And it was... but when the plates arrived, I did my little "a cup is the size of your fist" comparison, I could easily see that there were about 3 cups of pasta on that plate! I immediately cut the plate in thirds, isolating what I would eat from what I would take home for later. Then I concentrated on conversing, and ate slowly, sipping water in between bites.

When I got home, I looked it up on line: and discovered that the entire portion, according to their own web site, would have been 800 calories, or nearly half of my usual daily maintenance level. As it was, I was able to be satisfied and even have a small dolcini (240 calorie splurge), and feel good about the experience.

I ate "enough", and got my take-home box for the rest. I had half of the leftovers last night... and enjoyed every bite. I fully intend to finish it tonight... another satisfying meal to look forward to. Guess you could consider it eating out like a turtle?


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REJ7777 7/23/2010 7:30AM

    emoticon Congratulations on your smart choice! Three meals for the price of one isn't too bad either! emoticon

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THIAGRAM 7/19/2010 9:03PM

  Fantastic! You are a great example! Thanks!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LJCANNON 7/19/2010 6:16PM

    emoticon emoticon
It sounds like you have a LOT to pat yourself on the back for. You did Great!

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WALKINGANNIE 7/19/2010 2:51PM

    Fantastic Sparking Barb!


You were kind to your health and your budget - and enjoyed yourself as well. That's a triple win!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PENNYAN45 7/19/2010 10:36AM

    You are so right about the portion sizes served in our restaurants these days. You got three times as much food as you wanted - or needed!

I think it is terrific that you and your daughter-in-law get together to celebrate your son's birthday while he is away!


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KASEYCOFF 7/19/2010 9:43AM

    I wish more places would let people order the 'children's plate.' I understand why they don't want to: an adult diner who eats a smaller portion - and pays commensurately less - will reflect a smaller 'bottom line' for the restaurant. But I would be willing to pay a little (LITTLE) more and not have the temptation of the 'extra,' or feel as tho I was wasting food. Your solution of taking it home and reheating and so on is a good one, but of course it's not always practical. Wonder how we could convince restaurants to rethink the 'super sizing'? :-)

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ANDI571 7/19/2010 9:42AM

    Good for you. Isn't it great to eat what you want, just in the portions we should have. Then we don't feel deprived. I used to do that with coconut cream pie. I would order it and eat about 3 bites, take it home and have to enjoy for several more days.

You did awesome. emoticon

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MAMOOAUG 7/19/2010 8:59AM

    That's awesome. What a great way to put what you have learned into action.

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MSLZZY 7/19/2010 8:02AM

    The portion sizes are amazing at some restaurants! Glad you did so well. Like getting two meals free and still being satisfied. Less time in the kitchen, too! LOL! emoticon

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Yard progress

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Rain overnight and still a little bit this morning, but that makes some weeds easier to pull.

Here is the fence row from a couple of weeks ago:

And here it is after this morning's tree-killing!

Believe it or not, even in Nebraska, the home of Arbor Day, trees in the wrong spot are indeed weeds. Also updated the background photo, showing a tiny bit of progress there (and of course, the more profusely blooming Asian lillies!

I feel accomplished!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THIAGRAM 7/19/2010 1:13AM

  Wow! You are doing great!

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KASEYCOFF 7/18/2010 5:51PM

    Hey, Barb, you are really making headway - the fenceline is looking good! emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 7/18/2010 5:17PM

    Great! Good job. -Marsha

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LJCANNON 7/18/2010 5:10PM

    emoticonYour hard work is paying off in a beautiful yard. The Bonus is that you burned a BUNCH of calories.

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DONNABRIGHT 7/18/2010 5:03PM


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PEGGYJEAN13 7/18/2010 4:26PM

    We had trees in the wrong place this morning too! The neighbors broke off and landed in our yard last night. We also lost our flagpole and that will need replaced asap. It looks great with less trees, but hard work for you.

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MSLZZY 7/18/2010 12:35PM

    Good job! It looks great! emoticon

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JUST_TRI_IT 7/18/2010 11:48AM

    YEAH! You have made huge progress on that fence!!!

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SHAPNUP 7/18/2010 11:29AM

    Nice job! I don't have a yard to care for, but I feel accomplished today, too, cuz I got my dad's will and powers of attorney finalized. Here's a emoticon for both of us!

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WALKINGANNIE 7/18/2010 11:29AM

    You definitely ARE accomplished! emoticon

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On the lighter side: Getting to Know You!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

OK, Kaseycoff, you're on! I haven't done one of these in a while, and here it is. Feel free to play along, oh, Spark Chums!

WHERE ARE YOU FROM? Born in Nebraska, USA. Lived many places during my career life, but in the end came "home" to Nebraska.

DO YOU HAVE ANY KIDS & IF SO HOW MANY? One child, a son.

WHAT IS YOUR OCCUPATION? The easiest answer is computer programmer/analyst. Like with any profession, there are specialties and specifics that I won't bore you with.

ARE YOU MARRIED & IF SO HOW LONG? Well, I was married for 21 years and 11 months exactly... now divorced, my son says that was a net win. Since he's the mental health professional in the family, I'll take his word for it.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FOOD? How can one possibly choose? Right now I'm imagining fresh spinach! But ripe home-grown tomatoes? Heaven! Or how about last night's angel-hair pasta? Yum! What could beat a breakfast of veggie omelet? I think I'll stop now... or I'll have a binge on paper going here.

DO YOU HAVE ANY BROTHERS OR SISTERS? Three sisters and a brother.

WHERE IS YOUR FAVORITE VACATION SPOT? I love the beach... and the last time I walked on one was over ten years ago.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE MOVIE? Again, how can one possibly choose? Chariots of Fire, Apollo 13, Persuasion, Sense and Sensibility, vie with fluffier pieces like You've Got Mail and Gigi... that gives you a flavor!



Complete? Really? WHEN = December 2002; WHERE = in my home office; WHY I realized that remaining married to this man was destroying me, emotionally.

YOUR FRIEND JUST MOONED YOU. ARE YOU GROSSED OUT? When I get done rolling on the floor because they just did something SO out of character... probably not.

WHERE IS THE LAST PERSON YOU KISSED? That depends on what you mean by "kissed"... I'd have to say somewhere in the dessert in Iraq. If you mean romantically kissed, probably in his apartment in upstate NY.

DO YOU HAVE MONEY? I'm not wealthy, if that's what you mean. But I'm also not dirt-poor, or I wouldn't be typing on a computer at home.

WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO? My son coming home safe.

ARE YOU EXPECTING A PHONE CALL? May I quote Monty Python? "Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!" Ahem. No.

DO YOU HAVE A SONG STUCK IN YOUR HEAD? Other than the one Kasey hoisted on us in her blog? Seriously, it crowded out whatever was there, before.

LYRICS FROM THAT SONG? See Kasey's blog!

DO YOU LIKE TO CUDDLE? Sometimes. Don't often enough.

ARE YOU LISTENING TO MUSIC RIGHT NOW? Nope... unless you count dog snores as music (sometimes they are).


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUST_TRI_IT 7/18/2010 11:47AM

    LOL.. Kasey really did it to us this morning with "the" song! I only have the first few words though!!

So glad that you have enjoyed a REAL life after those 21 years and 11 months. Your son sounds smart!

Monty Python, huh? I am slowly beginning to understand that humor. I am such a late bloomer! He's my DH's favorite!

Fun to get to know you today :)

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ANONALEE 7/18/2010 9:12AM

    Thanks for sharing, Barb! emoticon

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MSLZZY 7/18/2010 6:55AM

    Very interesting! emoticon

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