All Write, TV

In Which I Run Around and Thor Makes His Television Debut

IMG_20181003_180928Whew! TV is hard work!

In this recent Front Porch segment on Fox28 Spokane, I tell about the time I accidentally went for a run.

Speaking of exercise, my tubby tabby Thor makes his network television debut in this episode.


Click here to watch the whole sordid story and tune in to Spokane Talks Sunday, October 7 to hear about my encounter with the PC Police at the grocery store!


Workouts offer a Wii fit of frustration

Knowing that every year my New Year’s resolution is the same (to regain the figure I had at 21) this Christmas my husband thoughtfully provided a gift to get me going in the right direction. No, I didn’t find a personal trainer under our tree, nor did I discover a gift certificate for liposuction. Instead, Derek bought me a Wii Fit Plus.

Wii Fit is an exercise-themed game made by Nintendo. You step on a balance board and it measures your weight, tests your balance and tells you your fitness age. The Wii Fit Plus is an enhanced version of the original game. I think the “Plus” means extra frustration at no extra charge.

Our 10-year-old technology expert set up the system for me. Following the instructions, I stepped on the balance board. Within seconds a message flashed on the television screen: “Unbalanced!”

As if that weren’t offensive enough, what followed was worse. My Wii Fit age? Forty-nine. Since that birthday is still five years away, I’m afraid I’ve muttered some uncomplimentary things about my Christmas gift.

I felt better when I discovered I could create my own personal trainer. I named him Sven. He’s a little pale and pasty and his lips don’t move when he talks, but he says positive things like, “Wow! You’re good at that!”

Of course, he said that when I was doing the deep breathing exercise, but it’s nice to have one’s skills appreciated.

The feedback wasn’t as encouraging when I proceeded to some of the more strenuous activities. The program lets you play a variety of games to work on areas like balance, strength training and aerobics.

As my children howled with glee, I attempted to head soccer balls without getting beaned by panda bears or shoes. I missed almost every soccer ball, but was repeatedly struck by the objects I tried to avoid. I think it’s disrespectful for children to laugh at their mom when she gets hit on the head with a soccer cleat.

So, I stepped off the balance board to tell them that. When I resumed the activity, a message flashed across the screen, “I know you took a break during this exercise, but don’t worry, it will get easier.”

That’s just disturbing.

The kids stopped laughing when I aced the step aerobics workout. Jane Fonda and I mastered this routine in the early ’90s. They were also somewhat subdued when I demonstrated my Rhythm Kung Fu competency.

But then I tried Rhythm Boxing. My audience distracted me. If it had been a real match I would have been KO’d in the first 10 seconds. I didn’t fare any better at Hula Hooping, and the Yoga routine exhausted me. I decided to take a break for a couple days.

Not a good plan.

An even worse idea was checking my fitness age at 10 p.m. on Sunday night. The stupid game said I was 62! I’d aged 13 years over the weekend. I blamed it on my kids being home for Christmas break. Well, that and Christmas cookie consumption.

But I didn’t give up. Sven and I are working out every day and the kids aren’t allowed to watch. I just wish my Wii trainer would get a tan and some new exercise attire. Still, he seems pleased with my progress. Yesterday, he said, “Well, persistence isn’t a problem for you, now, is it?”

That persistence is paying off. My latest fitness age is 38! I may never again have the figure I had at 21, but I won’t stop until my Wii Fit Plus tells me I’m 29.

I wonder if I can get that on my driver’s license?

This column first ran in the Spokesman Review, January 7, 2010. Sven and I broke up shortly thereafter.  But I’m pleased to tell you we’ve reconnected and are back to monthly workouts.