One fat geek's attempt to regenerate into a not-so-fat geek by watching the entirety of Doctor Who while walking on a treadmill

First Things First, But Not Necessarily In That Order

Dec 01 2017
First Things First, But Not Necessarily In That Order

We have been talking about re-doing the upstairs floor in our house for a while now, and a few weeks ago we finally decided to go ahead and do it. We picked out our new hardwood floor, ordered the materials, and yesterday they arrived at the store. So this morning I took a van and picked up 29 boxes of wood planks, plus underlayment and trim pieces, and brought them home. First I had to unload them into our garage, which wasn't bad - only a few steps from the van to the ground. Later in the day I had to carry each 52.6 lb box from the garage, up the stairs, and then into one of our bedrooms so that the wood can acclimate properly for a few days. Twenty nine trips, hauling that weight up the steps and then carefully stacking the boxes. As I was doing it, though, it occurred to me: as exhausting as it was, and as heavy as those boxes seemed, the weight of me plus the box going up the stairs was actually less than my total body weight only nine months ago. I used to haul that weight up the stairs, and everywhere else, all day every day. No wonder I was exhausted all the time. Honestly, I don't think that nine months ago I could have moved 1,500+ lbs of wood planking upstairs by myself, I would have had to pay someone to do it. Today I certainly broke a sweat doing it, but it got done and in a fairly short amount of time. Yay!

On top of that, I spent an hour on the treadmill today watching Tom Baker dress up like a cactus. So let's talk about that.

Meglos - Parts 1 & 2

(TARDIS Data Core recap)

How to describe this story? A planet where civilization has moved underground because the surface plant life is too dangerous. The society is split into two factions, with Science on one side and Religion on the other (which, frankly, sounds like America in 2017). All of their energy is drawn by a MacGuffin called The Dodecahedron, which the religious sect worships like a god and which the scientific sect wants to study empirically but the religious folk won't let them near.

Meanwhile on a nearby desert planet, a sentient cactus (yes, really) named Meglos hires some profiteers to help it invade the dodecahedron planet, after first fusing with a kidnapped human and turning into a walking prickly pear.

Also meanwhile, the Doctor and Romana are working in the TARDIS to repair K9 from the salt water damage he sustained at the beginning of the previous story.  The Doctor decides to visit the nearby dodecahedron planet, because he was there fifty years previously and he wants to pop in and see how they are getting on.

Unfortunately, Meglos traps the Doctor and Romana in a time loop. He then impersonates the Doctor and proceeds to steal the dodecahedron. It is a rare opportunity for Tom Baker to get to play the bad guy, and he does it with relish. And pointy spines. By the end of the second episode, Meglos has gotten away with the goods while the Doctor has broken the time loop and subsequently been captured and given the blame. Oh no!

The biggest and most joyful surprise of the episode? The return of Jacqueline Hill to Doctor Who for the first time since the 1965 story when Ian and Barbara returned to Earth. She is not back as Barbara Wright, Goddess, but that's ok. She plays the head priestess that worships the dodecahedron, and she remains a Goddess.


It's not quite as good as the Aztec headdress, but it's not bad.

As soon as she walked on screen I was grinning like a fool. It's been so long, seven months since I said farewell to Barbara, and I had almost forgotten how much I adore her. In the ensuing time, if anything Jacqueline Hill became even more riveting to watch. It's just so nice to have her back, if only for today and tomorrow.

I also have to say, although the background music continues to be 100% synthesized and composed by Peter Howell, it seems like it calmed down a great deal for this story. The Leisure Hive was just so overwhelming and bombastic with the incidental music, so it's nice to have it mellow out and actually be incidental again. Hopefully that trend will continue.

Tomorrow I have two performances of my show, so I need to get to bed now  in order to get enough sleep and have time to hit the treadmill in the morning to finish this story. I'd say I'm on pins and needles waiting for the ending, but that would be a horrible pun.


I would never be that tacky

STATS:

Doctor(s): Fourth
Companion(s): Romana, K9
Episode(s): Meglos - Parts 1 & 2
Steps Walked: 7,534 today, 1,845,187 total
Distance Walked: 4.30 miles today, 934.04 miles total
Weight: 250.74 lbs (five day moving average), net change -56.56 lbs


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