"Beware when the great God lets loose a thinker on this planet." ~Ralph Waldo Emerson US essayist & poet (1803 - 1882)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

i have been cleared to begin running, a little bit

So after a little begging i am allowed to continue, hell, begin the training program. Today is a scheduled 4 miles, so a nice easy way to get back in the saddle. The weather is in the mid-80 and although humidity is a little high, nothing i can't stand.

If this week goes ok, i'll start encorperating some ways to add some drag to my running next week. Like running in the heat of the day, so the fall chicago weather is literally a breeze. Maybe running with the camel-pak more on some shorter runs to increase drag, and most definitely hitting the speed work, while keeping up with the new stretches i have been using.

Weight is in good order, as i have been careful through the sidelined moments and as corny as this sounds, swimming tons of lengths in my little pool. So after jumping on the scale on Sunday, i've had to get back on the last two days to be sure of the weight....

189, ok let's call it 190 but still a new body mass index of 24.39-25.04

Enough of the running already....

i watched The Prestige the other night and not to ruin it for anybody, it seemed ok at first. Two rival magicians, a cool David Bowie, Tesla role, and twist and turns of what someone is willing to do for their craft. But....and if you haven't seen it, sorry.....Bruce Willis' character was dead the whole time.....no not quite, but.....the entire premis of the rivalry/hatred is based on a trick going bad. Except the woman didn't have to die, it was a trick lock, instead of beating on the sides of the glass box with an axe, and wasting time....why didn't they just flip the trick lock???? Obviously, the characters had prepared for this emergency by having the axe handy....It was explained in an earlier scene, y'know how the trick lock worked, by the axe weilding Michael Caine character.

So this is what i think about while swimming little laps in my pool. Two examples the trick going well and not so well, but remember the trick lock??...

the things a person can find on the internet... not quite Flash Gordan, but in hindsite maybe The Prestige needed some Bore-worms......

thanks for reading

Saturday, July 21, 2007

It's been...one week since i updated, why, so long it's not really like me not to post????

Well, two or three reasons and trust me this one is not meant to be a brain dump. i'm gonna go go with the drive-by quick hit approach:

Daughter Allison, 13 year old, is visiting from waaaaay up north, geography buffs---up means away from the Earth/ down means closer to the ground, therefore no such thing as up north/down south. It's been great to see her, it's been since the Bayshore Marathoon. It's amazing how fast little girls grow.

After passing the Series 7, General Stock Licensing Exam, i still am not done with exams. I had last week and until Thursday at noon to prepare for the Series 66, Financial Advisor Exam. 100 questions, 71 right to pass, 2 &1/2 hour time limit. This is the State Securities Laws exam. As each State can set there own laws for state registration it's fairly generic based on big picture stuff. Of course, since it's a law exam it was written by lawyers. I've had to study 278 pages this week, mostly new material, and take 1000 practice test questions. Next week is another 600 practice questions before Thurdays 1:00pm test.

My back is FUBAR'd. Or at least it was....i have seen the back-quack a total of three times and although i am expecting a clear to run date on Monday's final(?) visit. i've been in some pain.

Leg strain has been determined to have been caused by hip misplacement (where'd it go???) Leg feels tons better now and back is sore. i swear i was in better physical shape when i smoked 1/2 pack a day.

After a hopeful Series 66 passing score, a two week preparation for the Michigan Life and Health Insurance Test. That will be the end of standarized test and i get to spend a week or two in the near future in St Louis, to train on how to actually use my new knowledge.

So next week: Allison goes by up north, Boooo; i get to re-start marathon training, yaaayyy; i get to take another test and hopefully pass, yaaaaayyy; i get to start studying for another test, boooo.

Being a huge fan of live music: i finally was able to see The Police live last Tuesday. Love'd it, great show, opened with Message in a Bottle, right into Synchonicity II, right into Walking on the Moon, from there it was a never ending blur of hits....but since i figure i'll never get to see this band again, why not do Spirits in the Material World or Synchonicity I???? i know you gotta leave the fans wanting more, but i ain't waiting another 25 years for the chance to see them again.

Fun Guv started a new job this week. Customer Service for a local furniture chain. She can't be Lisa anymore. Apparantly, there is already a Lisa there, so she had to pick another name. Although LISA and i thought Neveah would be a good choice (it's heaven spelled backwards), her new employers opted to pick her middle name, Michelle. No lie, this has got to be the dumbest, most de-humanizing policy i have ever heard of. It's almost like a Toby moment

Ok, wrong scene, but in hind-sight, i figured equating Fun Guv's new job to a scene from Roots could be a little bit over the top.....so i went with this scence from Flash Gordon, go Flash go, which might quite possibly the worst movie ever made with a somewhat decent cast of supporting legitite actors, hell even a James Bond.

Woooo, could i get anymore of topic of this posts???????

Big Welcome to Roz, welcome to the family. i can't wait to be that funny "uncle" who teaches you to pull my finger.

thanks for reading

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Big time running withdraws...

When the back-quack told me to stop running for a few days, after he adjusted a few of my lower vertabrates, i cringed. Two days later for a follow up adjusted, he said i could walk but to do nothing jarring. Riding a bike could be ok, but i shouldn't push anything.

Wednesday, i go back for a third and hopefully final pushadjustment. He knows i am trying to marathon train, and like every other sane person i know, is real big on letting my body heal.

Since, i can't seem to post about running and i don't feel yet like typing about new work things, let's go back to a nice political rant.......

i guess i still remember hearing that George Bush doesn't care about black people, and now it seems to be the entire GOP. Big shock, eh? At the recent NAACP convention in Detroit, all presidential candidates from the Democratic and Republican parties were invited to attend.

One Republican showed up. One...Tom Tancredo, who used his time to talk about illegal immigration. Now this seems dumb to me cause, in a convention center filled with members of the NAACP, i guess you expect the majority of the attendees to be...black. Why not speak to your audience??? When many members of group you are speaking to can trace their origins back to slavery, ergo...immigration via abduction and cruelty....

i just think it may not be the front-running topic for the NAACP.

...but Giuliani was right here. He attended a $2500.00 plate fundraiser is Novi. Half an hour drive to Cobo Convention Center Downtown. Sure demographically, most members of the NAACP vote democratic, but what a snub. It wasn't even worth an hour of Rudy's time to make an appearance.

...alas, the now defunct "vote for Mike '08" did not receive an invitation to attend

i love a good conspiracy theory....

O.k. here's the deal...Once in a while, i get to thinking about terrorism. i think how our own government tells us terrorist may or may not be planning to attack us. And while i stare blankly at the idiocy of such a comment, i know many people begin to panic.

And while i never stocked up on duct-tape to protect my family from the non-existent dirty bombs that were en route to my little suburb via non-existent inter-continental iraqi weaponry, i know many who did. Sad but True

After reading the Downing Street Memo's i do not believe anything our government says and little the media tells me. Cause the media is just a pawn, and freedom of the press is dead....

So....i don't really believe the two unexploded cars found in London were planted by terrorist.

Sounds dumb, but i figure in a country where leadership just changed and a new prime minister could be rallied by public support to get out of iraq; it's not in the terrorists best interest to ensure Great Britain stays in Iraq....but it sure is in USA's best interest.

Since when do we hear about unexploding car bombs.....
Since when do terrorist have two that don't explode at the same time....
ooooh, don't we all feel just a little un-safer

pass the dust-tape....

i really need to get back to running soon....

thanks for reading

Wednesday, July 11, 2007


13 % to much studying. Just kiddin', Thank Gawd this one is over. 260 total questions:10 practice experimental in the mix. These don't count one way or the other, but no way to know which 10. 130 per 3 hour session, with a mandatory 30 minute break between.

I thought after the first session i was dead in the water. It took almost 2 &1/2 hrs of the alloted 3. No gimmees...

The second half was much better. i managed to butter-up the proctor a little to get an indication not to panic. After all they see the scores, after the first half, i don't.

The second half was like a negative split. i seemed to know all the answers, or at least didn't question myself as much. i only marked one answer for review after the test, and finished in under two hours...

Oh crap, did i go too fast??? Did i skim over to many wordings of trick questions?

First rule, never change your original answer. Second rule, if you are positive of the answer because of wording on further questions, then skip the first rule.

I didn't change any answers for the first half and for the second, i only marked one for review. Then press the END key and wait for the test results.

The longest ten seconds spent staring at a computer screen, not remembering to breathe, until.....

Pass 84%.....whew

Thanks to all the well wishers from everyone who wished me well. Thanks isn't enough. i love positive vibes.

Next up...a chiropractic appointment to see what damage i have done to my back after 8 weeks of studying from the wrong type of chairs. Maybe this could be affecting my running, or lack thereof, ability???

Followed by 2 weeks to prepare for the next licensing test. The dreaded Series 66, investment laws, 100 questions, get 71 correct. Then two weeks of insurance studying and the Life and Health insurance test. Only now i get to add market research to the mix of studies.

In the immortal words of Flounder "This is gonna be great!"

Thanks for reading, and maybe soon a running update

And maybe soon, word of Animal's Spawn, kinda stirs up images of Todd McFarlane, for the comic fan-boys out there

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

In a Preachin' to the choir kinda way....

Another quick Clerks II moment. It's tough to find a pg-ish moment in these movies but every once in a while.

Anyway, it's hot. Holy cow it's hot. So, i ran for 7 miles Saturday and today i am hoping to get in 5 maybe when the sun starts heading down. It'll be a good way to clear my head before the big test tomorrow morning.

It's a a bit nerve-racking to know that i will either pass and still be employed on fail and not. i'm ready and have passed all my pre-test but who knows what will happen tomorrow? All i can do is remain confident in the training and my preparation. Sound like any other activity i participate in????

OK last one i swear

Thanks for reading

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Hope everyone had a good 4th of July. After my weird morning, everything was back to normal and the kids spent the day around and in the pool as we didn't go anywhere.

We just hung out for a bit and i did some studying. Next week is the big Series 7 examination. It's basically the general stock brokers exam in simple terms. Not exactly the Bar or a CPA examination, but it has required 8 weeks of preparation.

Running stuff: Now is not quite the time for running on back to back days. i had a nice 5 miles on Tuesday and, due to thunderstorms, a not so nice 4 miles on the new dreadmill on Thurday afternoon. Even with one of my favorite Star Trek episodes playing, it was a definite labor of love to run.

Yesterday was another 5 mile run in the plan. Alas, i am not ready for back-to-back days as my body has completely rejected any idea of running. i went a painful 1/4 mile and turned home. Fun Guv and i took the dog for a walk instead.

Looking ahead i hope to be able to go at least 10 miles tomorrow.

Health wise, i seem good. Weight is back down 191 so with BMI, if i am 6'1" my index is 25.19, if i am 6'2" i am 24.52.

Lastly, but perhap a longer moment to reflect on the voice of the x generation. Not Kurt Cobain, i love Nirvana but alas, a la the Lizard King, Cobain did not last long to enough to be more than a legend whose impact has been grossly overestimated....No i mean the genius of Kevin Smith. Who else captures the mentality of the slacker generation???

Since my favorite Great Lakes Running Gal, LISA hasn't seen any of his movies, a teaser or two. Perhaps we will have a View Askew Film Festival and watch them all in a row....

The beginning....

and then, a budget and color...

and the science fiction movie

Why Sci-fi??? according to the director, it would take science fiction for a lesbian to sleep with Ben Affleck

Next, the thought provoking, extended can God create a rock so big she can't move it, joke

look at the size of that budget...Remember who plays God??? Doing Cartwheels....and check out the logo on Chris Rock's shirt, while on the train.

And then the worst, but perhaps funniest of them all. an entire movie of inside jokes reflecting on the previous movies.

and then the Bennifer monster strikes down a decent movie. J-lo's character dies 10 minutes into it but Gigli backlash and no Jay and Silent Bob, but really funny (almost a family movie)

and then the most recent, this time in color....

Hero to the slacker generation!!! With adamantium balls

Thanks for reading (viewing)

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The Pseudo-ceremonial passing of the gavel

Last Saturday was the Anchor Bay Rotary Club's installation dinner. Which means i went from President-Elect to President and our President becomes our Past-President, and somewhere another person went from President-nominee to President-elect.

A lot of titles for the guy that just rings the gavel and bell twice a meeting and tries to stay on the topic of top secret Rotarian stuff during the weekly lunches.

Well not so top secret and i keep saying i will someday post about why i joined a Rotary Club. But not today, it is relevent to the rest of the post with relation to a rotarian motto "Service above Self"

And more on that later but first on this 4th of July, a running update:

Yep, i'm running again. Not as fast as i would like, but running.....yippeeeee!!! After Sunday's Bronze medal winning performance, i went out for a nice 5 miles. i averaged a 8:35 pace, and as slow as it feels, it feels good to just run.

Weight: 194, so no big gain during the off time and still lots of time to improve before Chicago. i have a little tightness still in the hamstring, but the stretches are working and it's not a pain to run, more of nagging tightness.

...and running stuff...Great Article about my favorite running store clerks. If you get Runner's World you can see a picture of Brian Sell in the middle of Paint Creek Trail. The PCT gets a lot of publicity via a few southeastern Michigander bloggers maybe this small view of the trail helps explain why.

....the article is good, but the true wonder with the distance project is when a beginning runner goes to buy your first pair of shoes at their store. The runners are the most humble, helpful....it's hard to put words to the feeling. Fun Guv got her shoes there and the clerk, Melissa White (picture in the issue) helped her, it was me who asked about her running in Chicago, and i asked how far she runs in a week.

When i bought my first shoes, i mentioned trying to run a marathon and the clerk, Trent, not pictured in the article, was so positive about the ability i will have for finishing. That i should stop in with any questions during the training. Anybody there would help.

At first, i thought it was just a pitch....but he made no attepmt to sell me the most expensive pair of shoes. Heck...he didn't even push a Brooks on me. But i got the best shoe for me and i try to be a loyal customer. See it's a little service above self here....

Once in a while an event can occur which defines man. No i don't mean, Defines "a Man". That would be some personal individual moment. i mean, what it means to be a man, what is expected and how we react, as a gender. i had one of those moments last evening and this morning.

Lynn is my next door neighbor. She's a single mom, 40 ish with a 14 year old son. Thank god, who was at his dad's last night. Around 1:00 am our phone rings. Lynn can't find one of her dogs, Brandy. Brandy is a little old but she can still jump a fence if she thinks about it or gets scared. With the number of fireworks going off in the neighborhood, and our own cowering waterlogged dog, it's easy to understand how Brandy may have gotten spooked. Or, she's old, maybe like dogs try to do...she found a hidden corner in the back of the yard to curl up and die. i have always heard that dogs are more comfortable dying alone and will try to avoid their owners this way.

So i went through Lynn's yard with a flash light and every possible corner of her basement. Brandy is a medium sized dog, but a little girthy as most old dogs get. But....no Brandy.

7:00am. Phone rings again.... Brandy is found. Lynn went looking for her a 6:30 and found her in the middle of 19 Mile Road. She had been hit. So she called us for help. Lynn was a wreck and i wish she hadn't seen her dog this way. She wanted to help bring Brandy off the road, but Lisa stayed with her while i went with a blanket, and, this part is a little gross, a shovel to get all of Brandy off the road.

i didn't want Lynn to see her dog this way. Although she had driven by, she hadn't seen what i was able to see, or had to pick up. Basically 19 Mile Rd, by our house, has a 45 mph speed limit. This is Michigan, so most people go faster. It was night, and Brandy was a black dog in the middle of an unlit street. At least she didn't suffer.

So as i stand in the middle of the road. First i figure Lynn will want her collar. i had to remove that, and then figure i need to clean it before giving it to Lynn. Then i have to roll Brandy and parts into a old blanket. Then make sure old blanket rolls her up, completely wrapped and pick her up, making sure stuff doesn't fall out, and put her in the back of my van.

I should have brought some large black garbage bags with me. A lot of blood soaked through the blanket and got on the back of van's carpet. Which meant it soaked through onto me as i picked her up to place in the back of the van. Yay

Get back home and then make sure Lynn is distracted while Lisa goes to clean off the collar. And use two big black garbage bags to surround Brandy and duct tape overlapping ends to spare Lynn from seeing all the blood soaking through the blanket. And oxy-clean the crap, outta the back of the van. Oxy-clean does a good job at this.

i get wigged out cleaning fish. i don't hunt because the idea of field-dressing a deer makes me want to hurl. i love zombie movies because they are fake gore. Real gore and me~~not a good combo. But it was either i do this or Lynn does.

This isn't a macho thing, but these type moments define what makes men, men. i've had a few hours to take it all in, and being a terrible situation, i'm glad i was able to help my neighbor. i'm glad she was able to call us. i'm glad her son didn't have to be involved, or her ex-husband.

Ironically, Lynn's on-again/off-again boyfriend/one-time fiance was over. He bartends and had gotten over about 3:30am and they are spending the afternoon at his parents house. He didn't get up to help. Too tired.

Service above Self

Thanks for reading

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Nothing like a race to help get through the emotional upheaval of an injury...

That's my story and i am sticking to it. As per LISA's advice i took last week off completely from running. Since the previous week was also a disaster what could go wrong?

Last year i ran the Pickerel Race in Algonac and finished second in my age group. This morning was the Pickerel run again. Well, injury are injuries and i figured a nice 10k would let me know if i was on the mend and give me a reason to actually finish. Also, a fellow Rotarian and friend Rich was running the race. We ran together and really just chatted through a gorgeous morning.

I finished in 52:05, with a final sprint to get 3 seconds ahead of Rich. i ended up in third for the age group and really think the small injury prevented a first place. De nada.

More important. i ended with only minor aches and a positive feeling about training again. i should be able to get back to the training program on the next scheduled run, Tuesday. i will be ignoring pace for a few weeks and just easing the hamstring back into shape.

Thanks for all the support and help to everyone with advise as i dealt with my first, hopefully, minor injury.

With regards to other athletic family members.....Jimmy received a week of tennis lessons from his grandmother.
Check out the form???? He's the second from the left. Watch the whole minute of fun....

thanks for reading