Saturday - where blog posts go to die

I was just reading something by another blogger that Saturday is where blog posts go to die (meaning no one will read what I write today, so I could do whatever I want).

I'll start by telling you how much I have not been running.  I'm experiencing the post marathon crash.  It's actually okay now that I have started taking Pilates and am back at the gym on the elliptical.

Friday I got my hair cut.  It's one of the most relaxing activities ever.  My girl does a good scalp massage as part of the process.  The stylist with the chair next to my stylist belongs on reality television. 

Friday I also learned that I-94 is it's own special kind of hell.  Luckily I got on at the edge of the construction zone and went away from it.  The westbound traffic though.  Wow.  It was stopped

Saturday was more remarkable.

I got up early.  Remarkable all on it's own I think.

I went over to St Paul to the River Parkway and Hidden Falls Drive to be a course marshal for the half marathon and cheer on some of my favorite runners!  (Nice job to Suraya, Kate, Jen, Yvonne, Beth G, Beth H, Robin and Heather!)  I only almost got run over by a car twice.  (Does "road closed" mean nothing to you?)  Luckily, on the other side of the street the 'course marshal' was one of St Paul's finest and he dealt with angry motorist who were trapped in Hidden Falls Park.

I went to Pilates, where I hadn't been in about two weeks.  (Last Saturday I was in Cincinnati and last Monday it was cancelled.)  I then looked at the elliptical with loathing and decided to abort that mission.  I did about 40 minutes on a bike instead.  (This is supposed to be good cross training for runners...)

My Pooky Bear and I went to Ikea for what has to be the fastest shopping trip either one of us ever had there.  She got organizers for the office.  I got a closet organizer.

To end the evening, I did laundry and hung out with Neighbor Steve.  His apartment is empty (this is very sad) because he is moving to Iowa.  He was bored in empty apartment and came over to hang out with me while we both did our laundry.  We reminisced about how we met.  (Come see my bathroom.)  Then the day took it's toll on Neighbor Steve and he went to bed at 9pm.  (It's ok; his whole apartment got packed up today.  And who hasn't fallen asleep at 9pm on a Saturday?)

I ended my evening by adding closet organizer number two and going to town on my closet.  I had to pack the summer clothes and unpack the winter clothes.  (Not sure if that's a good or bad thing.  I do love wool socks and wool sweaters.)  I discovered I have an emotional attachment to way too many t-shirts that I don't wear.  That's not even counting technical race shirts.

I treated myself to some Stella, so I'm going to open another and enjoy the night.


What the flood?

Post title is in honor of my favorite almost brother who is trying to stay above water in the capital city of Thailand.

My day was more the R-rated WTF.  Here's why:

7:10am Why is my lamp on?  Why is there no sunshine?  I grudgingly got out of bed and made oatmeal.  (Why do I not have enough hazelnut milk for my oatmeal?)

7:50am I headed out to the car to get to the computer training that is "mandatory" and by that we mean "completely redundant". 

Hmmm.  My power locks aren't working.  Moments after that - Oh shit, my whole car isn't working.

Those moments where you think "I'm supposed to know what to do here and it's not that hard, but my brain is apparently in quicksand at the moment" - it was like minutes before I could think "ok, call AAA and request a jump". 

Then I was all "Thank you God.  I did not want to go to this damn training anyways.  At least now I get to stay home and play on my computer for a while.

Phone call to AAA - For some reason the girl couldn't find my memberships so she had to transfer me around?  I don't know.  When they answer though, they say "AAA roadside assistance, are you in a safe place?"  before even asking for your name or membership number.  Nice touch.

8:25am or so, AAA-dude pulls up and looks at my battery.  Your battery is six years old.  You need a new one.  AAA-dudes now carry batteries in their trucks and he offered to sell me one and instal it for what I think is a very fair price.  Ultimately though, I just had him jump me and I drove straight to my mechanics.  (Side note - as I'm re-reading this to check it before I post, that line sounds dirty.  I wish my day went that way.)

9-ish I thanked my mechanics profusely for squeezing me in on a Monday morning and headed off to the remaining 2.5 hours of training.  (I'd have wished for a longer repair but it would have been more expensive.)

9:30am I rolled into the front "guest" lot at the county which is supposed to be for parking for 120 minutes or less.  Damn.  Turns out this thing goes for 2.5 hours, not 1.5 more hours.  The guy let me in and let me park there anyways.  First WIN of the day

12:30pm (Training went loooong.)  I came back and made spring rolls.  What is it with people at the office touching my food?  It's freaking rice paper.  Go away.

12:30:01pm I found out about all the people who'd been admitted to the hospital, kicked out of their assisted living, etc. etc. while I was away.  I entertained myself at work for most of the day following up on voice mails, emails, and catching up on some paperwork that's only mildly late.  Not time to panic yet.

6-ish it becomes clear that I am going to miss Qat Lady's "receiving hours" for the week.  I thought I'd have lots of time but that whole "Liz buys a new battery for her car" thing this morning really messed me up.  It also becomes clear I will miss the Qat Lady's apple crisp.  Boo!

Right before 7:30pm I roll up at the gym for Pilates.  I walk inside to a sign that says "7:30pm Pilates is cancelled".  Of course it is.  Instead of Apple Crisp, I went to the liquor store ad then hit Kowalski's (always a mistake to go there during a pity party) and got some comfort food.

8pm-ish  Come home.  The USPS has not delivered my accumulated mail.  (This is why you're bankrupt and no one likes you.)  Turn on the television - House is preempted for the World Series.  Suck it.  At least I had time to write my blog while drinking beer and eating pretzels and fancy cheese.

Vacation Saturday - Yo Delta! Where's my boarding pass

9:41am is when I finally woke up.  It was so foggy I decided god was telling me not to run. Win for me!  I made Eggs and Goetta and recruited Mom for another day of shopping. 

"I'll give you something if you help me install the printer"  I refer you to earlier this week when I was asked how drunk I'd need to be to help with this task.  (All the way drunk.)  I finally succumbed to the parental pressure.  It wasn't hard to install but it took a long time. I tried to touch the printer as little as possible.  That's mainly to avoid hearing "Elizabeth did that and I don't know what she did".  (Not fair when you ask me to install the thing.)  My prize was fuzzy fleece pants with flying pigs on them.  Whatever.

Marshall's Mom and I were both winners.  I got wool socks (worth the trip just for that), workout pants, and a nice pair of black slacks.  Mom got turtle necks.

Skyline It's always Skyline time on vacation.

Coldwater Creek - Mom wanted to go to look at pants.  We both lost.  At least I got her to try on the correct size.

Gap - Mom found the pants she wanted.  I already won at the Gap the day before. 

Eddie Bauer - Mom could've gotten pants here too but she thought they were too expensive.  (Worth every freaking penny.)

Old Navy Mom won big time with some corduroy pants.  I lost completely.  I shouldn't be allowed in Old Navy without a chaperon.  Mom doesn't count.

RUN!  I finally felt like taking a run, although I was worried about falling asleep half way through.  Shopping for two days is hard work.  I did a shorter run than the day before, only 4 miles instead of 6.  My parents live in hill country.  Luckily, they live at the bottom of a hill so I get to run up at the beginning and down at the end. I love running down hill.

Green Dog Cafe  Mom, Dad, Marge and I headed over to dinner.  I found this place a long time ago, once I refused to get my parents any more "items' for Christmas, only gift certificates to restaurants. (They'll actually use those.)  At first Dad hated it and then they got a liquor license.  Now he loves it. 

Bridge Mom's favorite thing to do.  Ever.  Dad and Marge beat Mom and I, only just barely.

Delta - WTF?  Sometimes Delta's "online check in" system goes bat shit crazy.  Tonight is one of those nights.  After not being able to check in on the Delta App at all (it kept trying to check me in for my flight from last Tuesday), I checked in online.  Then Delta failed to send the boarding pass to my phone via text message. So I checked in again and asked Delta to send the boarding pass link to my email.  (Several hours later haven't seen either one.)  So finally (damn, good think I helped install that printer) I checked in again and printed the boarding pass. Thanks Delta, for having all these great computer systems working so wonderfully. 

Cincinnati Friday - Run, Shop, Spaghetti!

8am or so I woke up and headed out for a run.  My parents truly live in hill country.  In Minneapolis I'm always all it'd be fun to run the full Flying Pig and then I get here and see the course.  I'd have to run my Highland Park hill route twice a week.  (Which is possible.)  But, yeah, hills.

9:30am or so I got home, after my $%#@ phone failed, only once, during the run.  It has to do with the music player and GPS on at the same time I think.  Endomondo does not help the situation.
I made myself breakfast and cooked Mom and extra couple pieces of Goetta.  (We need protein!)

11:30 or so we headed to Kendwood Mall, the only place in all of Cincinnati with Mac Store.  (Now consider myself blessed to have like four of them in driving distance from my house.) 
Apple store - "Hi, this is my mom.  Please show her what an iPod is and how to use one".  I knew she wouldn't buy one today but I wanted her to see what it was like.
Then we started shopping.  It took several stores for me to teach Mom the "try it on anyway" game and she played only reluctantly.  I had to recruit several salespeople at most of the stores into the game.  Their role was "that's not the right size; yes, you really need something smaller".
Talbots - not playing.
The Limited - Starting to play the game.  Most helpful salespeople ever!  I came away with something cute but Mom didn't get anything.
Eddie Bauer - Finally, a pair of jeans, a cute as hell top and a corduroy jacket for mom. I failed miserably for myself, but look at what me and the sales girl (Wendy, who lived in Minneapolis for six months) helped my mom find.  (Yes, I was the extroverted one who talked to salespeople and asked for help.  Amanda would have been proud.)
Lunch because by 2pm we were hungry as a hippo.  We shared a Chipotle bowl and neither one of us was quite full.  Improper nutrition is as bad in shopping as it can be in running.  Just FYI. 
The Gap - Now we're getting somewhere.  Sadly the hem had fallen out of the only pair of pants that fit Mom.  She really liked those pants too.  I got several cute items there.  
Macy's - the only place we both had Gift Certificates for; we both failed miserably.  Improper fueling.  We didn't eat enough because we were trying to save room for spaghetti.
Banana Republic and White House Black Market - just because Mom liked the khakis at Gap and these were the next two steps up from that store.  (Is White House Black Market part of the same company or have I been imagining that all this time?)  That was a long way to walk for no pants.  Mom is even a size smaller at White House Black Market.  She ranged 4 sizes in the different stores, which is usually what I range as well.
Michael's to pick up a birthday present for one of my favorite cousins.

Dinner Time - we went to Kentucky to see some family, play with some little cousins, and have spaghetti dinner.  (Something I usually only get a Christmas!)  We had a great time.  I read to Luke about Beavers (Amanda get your mind out of the gutter.)  Then we played with cars and the tickle monster got Luke.  (He got me back though.)


Cincinnati - What goes on in my head during vacation

Tuesday - Airplanes and thunder storms!  Oh my!

  • I've never been to the B Concourse at MSP before.  I thought it was make-believe, or just never used.
  • Hanging out with Alicia, her friend (who is a dude) kept wanting us to make out. (Not helped by a past story about us making out.)  Why are two girls making out always such a turn on to guys?

Wednesday - Gym and then Drive to Grandma!

  • Woke up late, made breakfast, then did crosswords with Dad.  What's better?
  • Sometimes going home is a preview of all the medical maladies I can expect later in life.
  • Feeling lucky to be hanging out on the couch with Grandma and Dad watching baseball and drinking a beer.
  • "Here Liz, I saved this paperwork for you".
  • This bed rocks.  I turn over, I'm afraid the bed will too.

Thursday - Grandma on Happy Gas.

  • "This is what you can look forward to CJ"  (Grandma after the cataract surgery, to my dad.)
  • Chopping sweet potatoes for dinner - I now have a blister on my finger.  WTF?
  • "How many drinks would you have to have to install the printer?"  (Mom, to me, after I said I'd had a couple glasses of wine and was probably patient enough to help her install a software program.)
  • "I am a part of God.  I'm as loveable as any damn flower."  (Just had to be there.)



A couple of ideas for Christmas presents for me.


Pilates, Lakes and "Good Luck Steve"

Saturday is Pilates day.  Thanks to marathon training, I mostly got out of the habit of running on Saturdays.  (Usually I was done with my weeks miles and saving energy for the Sunday long run.)  Pilates in early afternoon almost always seems like a good idea.

At the end of class we saw some protesters walking down Lake Street.  I don't know if it was the OccupyMN people mentioned in this article because the bank mentioned in that article is across from my gym.  This march seemed more about ending the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq (and Libya?).  The marchers were peaceful and with a police escort.  The drivers behind the march seemed less than thrilled.

I was fascinated to hear some of the people in my Pilates class think about their youth (yes, they were growing up in the 60') and that this really reminded them of the "people taking to the streets" that happened then. 

It was such a gorgeous day that I headed over to the lakes.  Originally I was going to do Isles or Calhoun but the protesters walking down the middle of the street had me literally doing all I could to go in a different direction.  I wound up at Lake Harriet which was far enough south that the protesters and subsequent traffic backups didn't impact me.

A nice sunny day, always good for a walk.  The top picture is hilarious because the place my 'head' falls and the spiky grass reminds me of my actual hair. 
I have no idea who's sitting on the dock down there, but it made for a great photo op. 
 The "walking path" logo looks odd to me.  The dude's arms are too long and out of proportion to his short little legs.  Just saying.
 This is how we roll in Minnesota - don't swim up to a sail boat.  The Muskies will bight your fingers off before you get there anyways.  It's actually a legitimate instruction at this lake because there are a fair number of sailboats, even today.
 Everybody's favorite part of Lake Harriet, the Bandshell.  One of my favorite memories of the bandshell is where the Monster Dash Half Marathon finished there last year. 

On the way home, I saw this dude on the bike path and then I was all "damn, that's a unicycle".  Swear. 

I came home and started cleaning like a mad woman.  I so rarely get the urge to clean (really clean, not just pick stuff up and wipe surfaces down enough to prevent a bio-hazard) that I almost always follow my instincts when it shows up.

Then we headed out for dinner to wish Neighbor Steve the best at his new job in Iowa.  (Happy that you got a great job but will miss having you down the hall.)  The best picture of the night came quite by accident.
 This wasn't meant to be a horsemanning shot but it almost turned out that way.

I came home and cleaned some more.  I may have finally resolved a long standing "too many cords and cables behind my entertainment center" issue.  At least it looks much better for now.  Maybe Santa will bring me a cable sleeve for Christmas.  (Maybe Pooky Bear will just take me to Ikea and get it down with.)

Beer and iPhones - true story

We're in full swing of what I refer to as "Jewish Holiday Season" for those people not of the tribe.  It means our office is closed a couple days a week for about four weeks in a row for people to observe some very important traditions.  I myself have been observing the tradition of "laying on the couch and doing nothing", following the theme of "no work is allowed on these days".  It's one of the many reasons I love my job.

And what I've really been up to:

Wednesday - the office was open, and I knew it was going to be an insane day that would ultimately end early (when the office closed at 4pm to start the holiday).  I did no exercise.  (Work was really rough.)

Thursday - I got up and made eggs and bacon for breakfast.  Then I did various activities that could all be accomplished while laying on the couch.  I got back up around 3:30pm and made spaghetti for my lunch/supper/afternoon-and-evening-meal.  I finally got my ass up around 7pm and headed over to the gym.  (Why are all these cars still here?  It's not January yet.)  I hit the elliptical for an hour.  When I came home I resumed my position on the couch and was starting to fall asleep when the Qat Lady called (at 11:20pm) and hauled me off the couch, into the shower, and down to the bar.  Once you know the reason my company was imperative, it's hilarious that the only flirting that took place the entire night was done by me while Qat Lady was in the bathroom.

Friday - well, obviously I spent the night on Qat Lady's torture rack *ahem* "pull out couch".  It took me half of the night and some of that morning to convince my friend that she would not turn into a pumpkin if she drove across the river to Minneapolis to enjoy some corn pancakes.

Qat Lady then wanted to get the new iPhone (who doesn't want the new iPhone?) so we went to Mall of America's Apple Store to get one.
Here we are (flaunting the Apple Store's "no pictures" rule) waiting for the credit card transaction to go through AT&T's network which was understandably blown up by the new phones being released.  Like 30 minutes later they just had her buy a gift card so they could complete the transaction later.

I spent much of the rest of yesterday trying to make my phone appear adequate next to the new iPhone.  To be clear the best things about my phone are that I don't have to deal with AT&T (thank you T-Mobile), and the native Google Maps app with Turn by Turn directions, etc. built right in.  The native Google Maps app I have doesn't come on the iPhone and I use it every day.   So I'm not sure if I would get the phone if it were available to T-Mobile.  It is pretty tempting.  Sight.



Some of the best things I read on the internet today:



Today was apple picking day with my Pooky Bear and the Qat Lady.  For our past exploits, see 2006, when I'd just started to loose weight from running; 2007 when we discovered pumpkins; 2009 when I did not take pictures, (an improvement over 2008 when I didn't even write about it?!?); and last year's trip.

This year we had to find a new place because we ran the last orchard out of business.  (Notice how every picture, Qat Lady has an apple in her mouth?)  Since Pooky Bear and Qat Lady are also both full time students, finding the new orchard fell squarely to me.  I found a lovely website called PickYourOwn.org and had a blast looking for orchards around town.  I was trying to avoid anything that had an admission fee, or anything that had an overly large petting zoo.  (You'd think I'd be worried about small kids but you've never see Qat Lady around goats.)  I found one I thought would've been an adventure but apparently it was a little too adventurous (here's a bag, let us know if you have questions, come back before dark) and didn't have apple donuts or a store.  (Maybe one year when we're feeling really wild.)

We settled on McDougal's Apple Junction which had a very different, much smaller, in some ways more professional, in some ways more family run, feeling than Sponsel's, our orchard of old.  It really is this orchard in these people's back yard.  We drove up their driveway, parked on their grass...  I thought the orchard was laid out clearly and liked that we didn't have to wait for a tractor to haul us around; we could explore at our own pace.
A view of the orchards from the "observation tower".  Yes, I did go up someplace high.  I was fine.  Here's Qat Lady and I smiling at the top. 
They did have a small 'petting area' with a baby cow (Calf? I missed that episode of Sesame Street), miniature goats, and bunnies.  Bunnies!
We decided they probably didn't use pesticides, or at least very much, because many of the apples that hadn't been picked had over-ripened and were being devoured by bugs.
The Qat Lady, eating apples.  Every time I turned around she was sampling another variety.  Her and Pooky Bear liked the sweeter varieties.  I liked the tarter, earthier varieties.  (Also the best for eating with peanut butter!) 
I had to get this picture so I could put it on a postcard for my nephew!  (Apparently when I send a post card it's important that I'm in the picture.) 
Obligatory "arty" apples shot. 
The three of us, posing for the camera while we waited for the tractor.  Before we realized we didn't need to wait!  This may be the only shot of all three of us wearing shades.
I really liked this picture, with the sky and everything.  Full disclosure - Pooky Bear may not have been such a fan, but how can really tell how a photo looks from the 2" screen on the back of a camera?

After the orchard, we headed into "downtown" Hastings and I use the term "downtown" loosely.  We had lunch at a cute little cafe and then sat out by the river where an eagle kept flying overhead, but never quite close enough for a really good picture.  (My dad would want me to defend this as a Bald Eagle sighting by describing the bird.  It was big, had a white head and white tail and did not rock while it was gliding as Turkey Vultures do.)
PS - I still wish my neighbor would turn down her TV!

Take phone running: hilarity ensues

I use an app on my phone to track my runs.  The one I picked out is called endomondo and it's been pretty reliable, although I'd read in the reviews some people having issues with the accuracy of the distance.  I'd never had that problem; it's been pretty consistent.  Until today.

All hell broke loose around mile 5.5 of my run.  For reference, the path I took was basically this one: 
 See how at no point am I actually running through a lake, or off sidewalks, or through the golf course?  Seems about accurate right?

This is what my phone thinks I did today:
 It's all good, from home, staying on sidewalks and paths, around the lakes, and then just before mile 6, I am Jesus and can now run on top of the water! I can dodge golf balls as I run across the golf course, and possibly over top of people's houses as well?

I knew something was off when it told me I'd run an 8:00 mile.  I wish.

Here's what my phone thinks my lap times are:
These are right through mile 5 (yes, I did run a 10:30 mile, go me!) and I think mile 6 is mostly accurate becuase I was walking some.  My phone also thinks I climbed and descended 2500 feet.  No wonder I was so exhausted later.

I have no idea what happened, or if it will happen again.  Or how to fix it.  I think this is going to be mostly trial and error.  And a sense of humor.

Marathon Running Songs

Focusing on the positive from Sunday, (my cheering section comes to mind!), I had a pretty good playlist for myself.  I had a good mix of new and old songs, all designed to energize me without giving me a panic attack (I'm looking at you Drumming Song.)

Here's some of my favorites:
  • S&M - Rihanna.  I don't like this video.  But seriously, I can't see it when I'm running so who cares?
  • Burden In My Hand - Soundgarden.  Soundgarden is almost always a good idea when running.
  • Mahiya - Superheavy.  Good for long runs, it's got a slightly slower beat so I probably won't use it for my short and fast playlists.
  • Miracle Worker - Superheavy  There's nothing wrong with you that I can't fix.  I am a big fan of Joss Stone.  And I'm a big fan of Mick Jagger in that pink suit.
  • Moneygrabber - Fitz and the Tantrums.  This is one of those songs I always loved and it took me like a year to remember to find out the name of it.  Glad I did!


Yes; it is that pretty here. And that hot.

Thursday: I did not run as I'd hoped.  I spent most of the day in a drug-induced, but pain free, fog.  Thanks DayQuil!.  I think I went to the gym that night and sat in the hot tub.  Who can remember back so far?

Friday I did run.  I had a great run with Beth.  We were going to do part of the Dreidel Dash course, but then we decided to go longer on Shepherd instead.  I felt like I was going to die for most of it, but Beth kept me going at a challenging and fun pace!
 The rest of the day, I don't really think I did anything.  I'm fairly sure there was a nap.  And I had the air conditioner on.  In Minnesota.  In October.  Global warming is for real.  That's the temperature in the evening, not even the middle of the day.

Saturday I woke up feeling much better.  I realized Qat lady had called me last night, upset that I was asleep and unable to join her on her drinking escapades.  Nyquil was so worth it.

I headed to Pilates, quickly becoming one of my favorite Saturday activities.  Then I persuaded Qat lady to go for a walk.  Something I attempt at least twice a week and succeed at quite rarely.  Qat lady amended the plan to include eating at the Birchwood Cafe.  Three seed sandwich: awesome!  No tomatoes: even better!

Then we took a walk around the Franklin - Lake loop.  Nice to put some good mojo on that stretch of pavement, because last time I was there, things were not so good.
 Still on the Minneapolis side, before the bridge.  The fall colors are wonderful right now.  And the leaves are just starting to fall.
 The view south from the Franklin Bridge. There were a couple of kayaks almost directly below us.  I couldn't take their pictures because I'm afraid of heights and couldn't look straight down. 
 On the "St Paul" side of the river, although still technically in Minneapolis right before the railroad bridge.  On marathon day, it was right before "the wall".  Still not funny.

I got an email that my marathon pictures were ready too.  Most of them aren't so good, perhaps because I was walking (death march?) during the stretch where the cameras had the best view and most time to snap pictures.  Here's a screen shot of the one I liked.
 Still up on my toes, right at the very end!  (I guess the black sports bra with the white shirt didn't do any harm.  Flick your eyes back up there and look, I'll wait.) 

Random update on the dilemma with my neighbor and her loud TV: I asked the association to look into it.  I think it's gotten a little quieter, or I thought that until 11pm tonight.  Bummer.


My current dilemas

Remembering life post marathon.  When there's no stress. (There is stress but it's not the same.)

Current dilemmas:
The neighbor who keeps playing her television too loud.  Every freaking night.  I know when you're watching.  I know when you're home.
It's a dilemma because I hate going up there to tell her to turn it down.  And I don't think it's actually that loud, I think it's just coming through the floor.  When I stand outside in the hallway (about to knock on her door) I can't hear the TV out there, so it can't be that loud.  And she does turn it down when I ask.  I could ask more; it's not louder on the nights I do ask than the nights I don't, just more aggravating.
I addressed that dilemma ultimately by going to the association.  I have no idea if anything will come of it.  I go in spurts of feeling bad, but only when it's quiet upstairs.

To run or not to run.  I'm getting the crud that everyone is getting in my office and by crud I mean congestion in my head.  Running solves this and Hal said I'm clear for a nice easy run tomorrow.  But I am very tired. And did I mention the crud?
Maybe I will take Benadryl and see how I feel tomorrow morning.

What pictures should I post? How about these two?
 Yes, that is what the 2011 Marathon Finisher Medal looks like.  The leaves have this whole stained glass thing going on.  It's a great medal.
  Sunrise this morning.  It was that dramatic.  (And then I got stuck in traffic.)


Long overdue pictures

I'd wanted to post these pictures since last Sunday but a software issue prevented me from posting any pictures for a while. (Blame Greasemonkey; yeah for Google for having awesome support too).

My people from Ohio will recognize this, not as marijuana, but at a Buckeye. Our state tree (and candy). Buckeyes aren't native to Minnesota but there's a few planted around the lake.

Love the shadow pictures. It was a nice sunny day. And much cooler than it is right now.

I'm sure neighbor Steve could tell me what kind of flower this is. I have no idea but talk about a late bloomer!

Sailboats at Lake Nokomis.

Playing with taking pictures into the sunshine.

More sunshine. Don't know why I had to take pictures; I got enough during the marathon to last a long time.

test 4 - great success!


test 2

A marathon completed UGLY is still a marathon FINISHED!

Race report in pictures:
Current temperature in Minneapolis. (WTF?) I assure you, it was much hotter at 2pm when I finished.

Stats from the race. It was ugly. And ended in the medical tent. (Special thanks goes out here to all the volunteers all the way along the course who kept me hydrated, and the medical personnel at the end who kept me basically healthy.)

Stats from the iPod and Nike+. See all that chaos at the end? That's about how I was feeling. See that blip at mile 6? I have no idea what the heck that was about; I assure you it did not help anything. Hilariously my iPod thinks I ran 29 miles. Not the most screwed up mileage I've seen from my Nike+ system, but getting close.

Just a refresher - this was Twin Cities 2010. (Which didn't end in the medical tent but perhaps should have? Immodium is both awesome and from the devil.)

And this was Amsterdam 2009, my first marathon ever, which involved neither a medical tent nor immodium. My finish time was 5:38:27, down in the left corner.

At this point, a finish is a finish. Big THANK YOU to my friends who came to cheer along the course. It's a really big deal to me that you made the effort; easily the best part of the day. (Beth, Robin, Amanda, Chris, Lindsay, and special guest Yvonne who was a sight for sore eyes/legs/etc at mile 25.)