Of sports and men

Back in 1989 I was in… a school. No need to date myself more than that. Anyway, one of my teachers was really into NCAA basketball so he asked us each to pick a team that would win it all. Still in my full on nerd shell I had no idea what teams were even involved with such a sport, so naturally I asked my dad. He suggested Michigan. Actually he suggested a few schools, but Michigan was the first. And they were the ones with the Wolverine mascot. That’s right, a team named for the coolest comic book character (listen, I can retcon that history if I want). So naturally I picked them.

And they won.

Continue reading “Of sports and men”

Conversations with a 6 year old #1

Kay: What would you do if you met a person made out of bacon?
Me: I’d eat them. I’d feel bad about it, but I would eat them.
Kay: I’d probably just rip their hand off.

I guess that’s… better?

This blog goes to 11

A friend of mine pointed out that his blog turned 7 today. I was surprised because it was so close to my own “blogiversary.” (Does anyone still use that term?) So I checked and realized it wasn’t just close, it actually was my… anniversary of starting a blog. The old tradition was for me to forget about it until the 27th and then just copy and paste my entry from the previous year explaining what an idiot I was. Because, you know, keeping track of the day your blog started was very important at the time.

Anyway, since this is my first entry in a while and I probably haven’t talked to most of you outside of some random Facebooking, you should be able to guess that my “communicate more” thing hasn’t been panning out so well. But I will say that the health kick is definitely on the upswing. The gym around the corner finally opened and I’m already back up to 2.5 miles of running most days. Another week or so and maybe I’ll be back in my 5k form so that I can actually run a 5k.

Reading has definitely become a big focus and not only am I reading pretty much everyday, but I’ve already finished 4 books and am on pace for my challenge to read 24 this year. The photography and building hobbies are sort of on hold, but thanks to a trip to Disney World, spending time with The Kay has been more heavily prioritized. A lot of time spent with Legos has meant that sometimes she even wants to be with me instead of Mommy. Score one for Dad!

As for vinyl… well at least I’m listening to a lot of music in one form or another. And that reminds me, with new albums being dropped by the likes of St. Vincent, Wild Beasts, Beck, Neneh Cherry, Phantogram, Com Truise, etc. it’s about time I put a wrap on 2013. Maybe I’ll finally write something about the great albums from last year…


New Year’s Revolutions

First of all, I love this commercial:

The deadpan “New Year’s revolution? Oh no.” reaction cracks me up.

Second of all, just like every discussion about “resolutions” I feel the need to state that I’m not really “into them”.  The idea of making a bunch of promises to yourself to make pretend that this is the year you won’t spend Sundays eating cheese and drinking beer in your underwear is just silly. Because when you spend Sundays eating cheese and drinking beer in your underwear, you’ve probably got enough disappoint going on in your life that realizing you broke a simple promise to yourself can only make things worse.

However the transition from the old year to the new one is a fairly appropriate time to reflect on what areas of ones life could stand some greater (or lesser) attention. And so I can disappoint other people as well as myself, let’s spell those out here. Continue reading “New Year’s Revolutions”

I just ran 3 miles

You probably already saw a mention on Facebook or Twitter from a couple weeks ago when I hit the 3 mile mark. That was true and false. My entire run in the morning had finally grown to 3 miles. But that still included the warm-up, cool-down, and breaks in the middle. My body was finally taking me through the entire first mile before I really hit a wall and had to slow down. While really great to be doing that well, it still wasn’t a solid 3 miles of running.

Today it was.

Three months ago when I first got up in the morning in the middle of a heat wave and put on sneakers to head out for my first “run” it took me about 34 minutes to walk 2.1 miles. I think I went around the high school track once and that constituted the entire “running” portion of the morning’s exercise. As my running increased and my time decreased, more laps were added and my route was adjusted. Eventually it was 4 laps at the track with long stretches of running. And then I got tired of the dirty looks from the gym class and decided to stop running at the high school.

So then I find myself on the road trying to find a new path. And I hit the mile mark. And I adjust my breathing. And I adjust my gait. And then I’m still running. And that day I go 2.1 miles – the same as my first day total – running without a break.

And then came the doctor.

Last week it was time for them to take a look inside and see if they find anything. So far so good. More tests in the coming weeks, but maybe just maybe my colon is in for the long haul. Either way, the test (and getting a cold) shut me down for 2 days. I didn’t run for 3 straight days and only walked on the 4th. For me, that’s a big deal. I can’t break the habit or it’ll die. And while I picked it back up, I wasn’t getting back to 2 miles straight right away.

And then this week I did.

This week I was back in form. And each day it was the 2 mile mark in the middle of a hill that broke me. Until today it couldn’t. There was an epiphany – if I can push myself through the wall at 1 mile, why not 2? And so I adjusted my breathing and adjusted my gait and found myself headed towards the “finish line”.

So I’ve got to hurry up and make my morning shake and take a quick shower before bolting off to work. But first I just wanted to bask in a little self-satisfaction that I hit another milestone today. 3 miles in under 28 minutes. Not bad.

And as an added bonus, here’s the song that pushed me through that wall:


Of colons and men

A few months ago I had a minor medical emergency. There was some blood involved and a trip to the ER. Everybody assured me it was likely nothing, but I should get checked out fully just to be safe. And so they shoved a camera up you know where so we could all rest easier. But we couldn’t. They found something.

A few months ago I had a polyp removed. The big ‘C’ came into play. And not in a theoretical, hypothetical, maybe sometime in the future this might have developed into something more than just a blob. No, it was “I think we got it all, but we don’t know for sure.”

And so decisions were made and delayed. Some people want to hack into me and start yanking things out. I’m all Sally Fields in the latest production of “Not Without My Colon”. The doctors and surgeons and I are still on speaking terms, but not nearly as much as my new lifestyle and the people supporting me. We started attacking this the “holistic” way. A slow process that has built up steam. It grows with confidence each day. This morning was yet another breakthrough.

Yesterday I was in Connecticut, saying goodbye to a wonderful lady – my Dad’s younger “Irish twin”. As sad as the event was, all of us cousins and aunts and uncles who were able to make the trip were so happy to see each other. Too much time had passed for many of us. I hadn’t seen my “rich Aunt Mary from Connecticut” (as she once introduced herself to me) for a few years, but at least I could make up the time with her kids. So in our typical family tradition the funeral became more of a reunion. And as conversations turned from topic to topic it came out that others had intestinal issues, too – Coeliac disease. And so we talked about diets and nutrition and the medical community – a far too frequent conversation these days. And I told them what I was going through. And I realized how much we’re all in this together.

This morning, after a day of “cheating” (how could I say no to a Guinness and shepherd’s pie?) and being away from my roughage and supplements my system was off. I’ve been “running” in the morning and it felt like the day off might jeopardize that. But then my body kicked into gear, flushed itself out, got ready and said “let’s move”. And so I got out and hit the road. And suddenly I felt faster, stronger and fitter than before. An extra lap around the track and still my fastest time. At home my body didn’t ache.

These things I’m doing? The green shakes, the digestive enzymes, the psyllium hulls, the essential oils, the running… it’s working. The extra 10 pounds and the small pouch that started to form? It’s gone. Being winded after a 30 second jog? Gone. Bloating and general discomfort after eating? Gone and gone. My body has re-learned how to take care of itself. So while I may cheat from time to time and take a day off every so often, my body will tell me what’s wrong and when and how to fix it. Today I am more sure of that than ever.

Dear Colon,

If there’s anything bad left in there, we’ve got to get rid of it together. I’ll give you whatever you need. Don’t give up on me, because I’m not giving up on you.

Some days

Oh Google, why must you taunt me with all of your privacy-invasiony ways wrapped in visions of ubiquitous and timely content delivery? Why won’t you let me ignore news about people I don’t know at all having a baby I don’t care about? Why do I feel like everytime I search for information I’m trapped in an echo chamber and need another option?

Some days I feel like I need a complete break. Just delete everything of mine and start from scratch without the ever watchful eye looking over my shoulder.

And then some days I open up Google Music and you suggest an “It’s My Life” playlist and I’m all, you really do know me! I’m not just an entry in a database! OMG, “If You Were Here“? Go ahead and take my social security number and a DNA sample from my first born. It’s totally worth it…

At least that’s what it’s like some days…

Who just turned 5?

This girl:

This girl!

I should really write more, but I pretty much forget how this thing works. I think I type words and then they appear on the Internet. I guess I’ll give it a try again. Either way, let me just say how amazing this little girl is – it’s even more amazing to think I had anything to do with it. I love you… The Kay…

Such a sweet smile...

Humor from a 3 year old

There’s something rather captivating about jokes coming from a 3 year old. It probably has to do with the mixture of Norm MacDonald-esque anti-humor delivery followed by the self-gratifying laugh of Jimmy Falcon. In the end, you just can’t beat the material.

K: Knock knock.
Me: Who’s there?
K: Blueberry.
Me: Blueberry who?
K: Blueberry who wanted to hold celery’s hand!

Or her classic bit:

K: Why did the chicken cross the road?
Me: Why?
K: To get to Costco!

That’s gold! I crack up no matter how many times I hear it.