Friday, September 22, 2006
Among autumn's sporting rituals there is one tradition that fills me with
mounting dread: the return of marathon season. If you've been to the gym or
attended a cocktail party recently, you know what I mean. Chances are you've
bumped into a newly devoted runner who's all too happy to tell you about his
heart-rate monitor and split times and the looming, character-building challenge
of running 26.2 miles. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a slovenly couch potato who
abhors exercise. I'm an avid runner with six marathons under my New Balance
trainers. But this growing army of giddy marathon rookies is so irksome that I'm
about ready to retire my racing shoes and pick up bridge.
Full story here.
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Friday, March 03, 2006
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Saturday, February 18, 2006
Friday, February 17, 2006
Thursday, February 16, 2006
Friday, February 10, 2006
Ayatollah Ali Khamanei, the noted wit, expert on freedom, and unelected religious leader—the leader who counts—of Iran, observed the other day that in the West, "casting doubt or negating the genocide of the Jews is banned but insulting the beliefs of 1.5 billion Muslims is allowed." He apparently thought this was a devastating point. Touché, Ayatollah Khamanei.
Really good article by Michael Kinsley here.
Christopher Hitchens also covered this issue here:
And civil society means that free expression trumps the emotions of anyone to whom free expression might be inconvenient. It is depressing to have to restate these obvious precepts, and it is positively outrageous that the administration should have discarded them at the very first sign of a fight.
Thursday, February 09, 2006
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you: Once More with Hobbits: A Lord of the Rings / Buffy the Vampire Slayer Adventure.
(It helps if you're familiar with - or, in my case, have every note and phrase burned into your brain - the musical episode of Buffy.)
Friday, February 03, 2006
Happy New Year, Western and Chinese.
I did make resolutions, and so far, they've been working out.
Get back off my ass and start properly training. This one is working out. Since my injury, I'm terrified of getting hurt and off track again, so I'm taking things very slowly. My birthday - my 40th! How did that happen? I have no problem with my age, it's just that I'm kind of astonished that I've made it that far - falls on November 5th. So do the marathons in New York, Athens, and Huntington, WV. While I'd love to do the Athens marathon - who wouldn't? - we just can't afford the trip there this year, with the wedding and all. Plus, it's November, and I'd hate to go to Greece without being able to go back island-hopping. So it's a toss-up between New York and Huntington. Entrance to New York is on a lottery basis, so I'm entering both. Either way, I will celebrate my birthday by completing a marathon. (I bet there are some people reading this and going, WTF? She hasn't done one yet?)
So my schedule is drawn up and posted on the fridge, and so far adhered to. I'm feeling motivated, and tell myself that it will only get better. Right now, living in Seattle is like being imprisoned in Tupperware. There's a gray sky and a constant feeling of damp. But soon, spring will come.
Lose weight. This appears to be working - at least, I'm fitting into clothes I haven't for a while. I don't know exactly what I weigh, as we don't have scales, but I have to fit into the goddamn dress, which is due to arrive in a few weeks. I really don't feel happy when I'm heavier - I'm not fat, but I love clothes and for the last year or so I've hated the way they hang on me. But there's a lot of progress being made here.
Develop work-life balance. By and large this is working. I have to be a little more focused on ripping through stuff during the day so I can get out early, but the benefits are so worth it.
Stop being so lacksadaisical about my personal relationships. In my last job, I had so little time that I really dropped out of socializing for quite a while - I could go a long time without calling or seeing my friends and family. And that's not good. I really want to make time for friends right now - it's important. And I've been focusing on this, and it's a pleasure to see it working out.
Don't freak out about the wedding. Focus on the big picture: will people feel welcome? Will there be enough to eat and drink? Will important people - parents etc. - feel appreciated and included? Forget about the little details. No one ever left a wedding complaining about the way the napkins were folded. So far, actually, it's been really relaxed - either it's not as big a deal as everyone says, or our standards are abysmally low - but four months down the road, who knows?
Get some stuff done around the house. We lucked out and found a maybe the last really cheap place - funky, cool, in a good location - in Seattle. As a result, we have a tiny mortgage, which we're not willing to give up (it's our Fuck You safety net, so that if one of us hates our job, we can risk quitting it). But the downside is that our place is pretty small - a hundred-year-old one-bedroom apartment. We need to bite the bullet and redo the bathroom, paint the place, and replace the windows. The building just got made a historic landmark, which in one way is cool - but on the other hand means that you have to jump through a lot of hoops if you want to do something that might affect the exterior. I hate the hassle of it, but we need to do it or we might kill each other. Hey: anybody in Seattle want an original clawfoot tub, cheap?
Five resolutions are plenty. Now I've put them out there I feel much more motivated!
Regular running updates will resume shortly.
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
Four websites you visit daily:
Four of your favorite foods
- Foie gras
- Curry chips
- Mashed potatoes
Four albums you can’t live without
- Astral Weeks – Van Morrison
- too many to list. Right now I can’t stop listening to Zap Mama.
Four vehicles I’ve owned
- 99 Miata, sadly abused.
- 05 Scion XB
- Yamaha Vino scooter
- A few bicycles, at least two of which were stolen in Dublin.
Everyone else has done this since I've been in blog limbo. Unless you haven't. So go do it. And let me know. Because I miss the little thrill that comes from getting comments.
LODWAR VALLEY, KENYA—Kenyan Cletus Jerop-Ogechi, a currently unemployed welder and self-described "old school" marathon fan, confessed openly Tuesday to enjoying long-distance cross-country running solely for the crashes. "Kenyans is the best in the world at endurance runnin'—ask anyone—but distance runnin' ain't nothing without the occasional old-fashioned low-blood-sugar elbow-to-the-ribs wreck," Ogechi told Runner's World through a translator Tuesday. "You get six, eight, twelve guys in a pack peelin' off five-minute miles and rubbin' shoulders, somethin's got to give. Might as well enjoy it, am I right?" ...
Full article here: http://www.theonion.com/content/node/44842