Bad Lunch Day
1/8/12

Well, today is shaping up to be a stellar day.

Besides being sick and putting bugs in my code, I decided to take a
break for lunch.  I discovered some small animal had eaten through my
last... wrapped Pecan bar.  How this happened in my hyper sterile
office and file cabinet, I can't figure.

But he apparently climbed into my file cabinet, into the box of
wrapped bars, and ate through the wrapper and a healthy chunk (for
him) of Pecan bar.

So after recovering from being freaked out, I went down to the
cafeteria. I was zoning out eating my bag of potato chips, and pulled
out something that felt odd. I dumped my chips out and there was a
ball of stuff in there. I guess it was some kind of potato stuff... at
least that's what I keep telling myself.

So I mean like... what the heck?

That is what I posted on facebook a couple days ago.  I was a little
worried how the rest of the day would turn out, but it was not such
that I'd call it a bad day.  It was certainly a bad lunch day.

Different types of bad or odd days seem to take on a personality of
themselves.  It's no wonder we figure there is some kind of invisible
entity following us around causing these things to happen.

For example, I remember one particularly bad day years ago.  I wanted
to go out on a motorcycle ride.  The bike had been developing a
periodic problem starting with the electric starter, so occasionally
I'd need to kick start it.  This was never predictable, and of course
it chose a day I just wanted to get out and take a ride.  Thinking
back, I probably felt the bad day already upon me.  So sure enough, my
plan to just jump on the bike and ride, didn't turn out.

The bike would not start.  This bike had a kick starter, but the pedal
was under the seat, so it was a minor production to remove the storage
webbing, unbolt the pedal, and bolt it into place.  But I was
determined to go out on a ride to ease my annoying day.  So
a-kick-starting I began.

In case it's not obvious, kick starting an engine which does not
really want to start is not an easy thing.  You're basically thrusting
your whole body down in a concentrated force on the pedal, which of
course moves during the thrust.  This leaves you sitting on the bike
with your foot off the pedal, so you need to lift yourself back into
place each time.  This is supposed to work the first kick, or at least
the eight time... but sometimes it just doesn't want to start, and you
end up doing this... well, until you're exhausted... and very
frustrated.

Now I've worked up a sweat.  There's nothing better than a ride on
your bike wearing your comfortable and warm leather jacket.  There's
nothing worse than it becoming a sweaty mess.  I took off my jacket
and and decided I was going to keep trying and get this thing running,
and take my enjoyable and relaxing bike ride.

As fatigue sets in, so does accuracy, and unfortunately my passenger
foot pegs are real close to the downward path of the kick pedal.  The
foot pegs were metal of course, and it's interestingly painful to note
that when your foot slips off the pedal, the foot peg takes all the
concentrated force of your body and tries to sheer off your ankle.
This hurts.  Like a lot.  Like enough to cause you to get off the bike
and wince in wild pain wondering where that piece of ankle cap bone
has gone off to.

But.  Despite this, I kept my cool.  It was like there WAS an entity
standing right there next to me, just begging me to lose it.  Laughing
and coaxing me to just yell or throw some kind of temper tantrum as if
the entire day's events were for this express purpose.  But I took
that challenge and I kept my cool, and despite being exhausted and
sweaty, I was going to start this bike and go on a relaxing ride.

So I walked it off, and caught my breath, and got back up on the bike.
I went for another round of kick starting.  I knew if I was going to
start this thing and take that relaxing ride, I needed to give it my
all.  I needed to kick the engine over faster than I had so far.  So I
really started jumping down on it as hard as I could.  And that's when
I sheered my ankle even harder than before.  And it hurt.  It hurt a
lot.  And I was off the bike in great pain again.

This time I didn't even see the entity, which was playing right into
it's plans.  All I saw was red, and that stupid bike.  But there was
no way I was going to loose.  I was going to start that darn thing.
That's when I saw my shoelace was untied.

I was angry but still in control.  I knelt down to tie it, and as if
it was the finale of a grand performance, as I pulled that shoelace,
it broke.  And so did I.  That was the last straw.  My darn shoe lace
of all things.  I yelled and threw the shoelace down to the ground.
And I had lost the game.

I think the whole apartment complex may have heard me yell.  And the
funny thing was, I could not even enjoy the throwing down of the shoe
lace.  It was so unfulfilling to throw it and see it catch a little
air and float down so gently.  It was as if two cupped hands caught it
and eased it down, then allowing the owner of those hands to roll on
the ground laughing.  I stood there for a while in the parking lot,
all sweaty, bike parts all around, jacket, helmet, bike chains and
locks, and one small shoelace.

I have a friend who has a more advanced theory about this sort of
thing.  You might say he's a scientist who studies such days as if
they were an act of nature.  He's kind of a storm chaser of bad days.
Well, I may be exaggerating a bit.  But it sounds like a cool idea.