Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Didnít run it, per se. Some light jogging, limited by the foot injury referenced in the previous blog. But I did start in that scrum of people, and ended up at the 50 yard line of Michigan stadium, jumping up to touch the banner that Michigan football players all smack on the way into the Big House on fall Saturdays. And they gave me a shiny thing to wear around my neck. Iíd show a pic here, but my brother was the one taking pics, and he hasnít sent them my way yet. Slacker. Then again, he did outpace my 47:04 by about three minutes, so I guess I canít call him too much of a slacker.
He did have one advantage, though. While my toe was hurting pretty early in the 5k, limiting how much running (vs walking) I was able to do over the course, his malady was a tight calf muscle, which he said actually felt better when he was jogging, rather than when he was walking. So he ran much more of the course than I did. He would have beat me by more, really, except he slowed down so he could take video as he was entering the stadium through the tunnel the football team comes out of, all the way to the finish line. He tried to get video of me coming to the finish line, but managed to screw it up right before I reached. Slacker.
Anyway, 47:04Öit seems like a time I can improve on for 3.1 miles. Thatís 37.5 laps on the gymís track. I might have to see how much better I can do. Once my foot behaves.
Sunday, April 06, 2014
Might not be the preferred state, mind you, but itís a state nevertheless.
Had that thought flit across my brain when I signed up for a 7v7 soccer league the other day. I played in that league in 2003, just before I moved to Wisconsin. Other than a single intramural soccer experience the next year, I havenít played any organized soccer since. Barely played any pickup, either, the last time I can remember doing so was in 2011. So this should be an adventure.
Iím also doing a B25K on Sunday (which, technically, is today). Whatís that, you ask? Why, a Bed to 5K, of course. Why do those things start so freaking early in the morning? Itís not like they really have to worry about it getting too hot when the event is in early April in Michigan. The crazy part here is that Iím doing so at all, what with not being a runner. I had a brief spell of jogging (mostly wogging) early last year, which ended completely when I started travelling for work. Even after that contract ended, and Iíve been home based for the last few months, I didnít pick the jogging thing back up. I meant to, I really meant to mess around on the track at the gym the last couple of weeks, but I managed to injure my foot last Monday. Went to the gym in the afternoon, and played pickleball, and then went to a concert in a club setting, and stood on my feet for the next 5 hours. My feet were hurting that night, and the next day, my toe started hurting, specifically. It was better last Thursday, so I went to a Detroit Red Wings game. No problem Friday morning, but by the end of the day, the right side of my left foot had swollen up, and I considered a trip to the ER to get it checked out Saturday. Some Advil and Flexall brought it to manageable status, and itís mostly better now, except for the big toe trying to pop out (or so it feels like) a lot Ė itís like Iím cracking the toe knuckle constantly, in the way some people crack their finger knuckles so loudly that it makes you feel uncomfortable? You know what I mean? Anyway, despite all that, Iím still planning to do this Big House 5K on Sunday with my brother, who is also not a runner. I figure there will be plenty of walking involved, but I also figure we wonít be dead last, and thatís all I ask. (and yes, the toe thing is certainly a concern for the soccer playing plans, too, but Iíll figure that out when we get thereÖprobably at the first game. At least that got pushed back to the end of the month, so I have more time to recover fully).
Went to another concert Friday night, happily a seated show, one of my favorite bands, Dream Theater. Funny thing, they played no songs from my #2 favorite album of all time (Images and Words), and I was entirely all right with that, because what they did play was a spectacular set list. Looking forward to seeing more songs show up on Youtube, like the drum solo bit here from Mike Mangini. He was a lot of fun to watch from my balcony seat, it looked like he was making faces all night, but a friend who was in the second row said he was actually counting out the time changes.
Anyway, I really ought to have gone to sleep two hours ago, as I need to get up at 7 AM, and itís 12:30. Not that Iím taking this 5k seriously in any way shape or form (apologies to any runners I might have just offended), but it would help to at least be awake.
Sunday, March 23, 2014
I suppose it had to happen eventually, feeling bad about smacking senior citizens around. I'm kind of surprised it took over a year of whipping them left and right and up and down before a moment of real reflection occurred, about whether I was a bad person for not worrying about it.
I'm talking, of course, about playing pickleball, where my playing companions are mostly 20-30+ years older than I am. And while I'm not a spring chicken (I'll be 39 in a couple of months), compared to those guys, I'm but a pup. I suppose it goes without saying that that's not an insignificant advantage in a game that reaction time and (relative) quickness play a role.
The reason it finally occurred to me was that someone I hadn't previously played with before said that "You're good!" And though I often been well aware that the youth had a lot to do with the success, something about that comment made me wonder whether I only enjoyed it because, playing against the people I play against, I do happen to be on a winning side often. I mean, it's not like I'm really any good at tennis or racquetball. I'm assuming that if I were to play against people my age and younger, I'll be similarly beaten regularly/handily. But I figure that as long as they aren't a-holes about it, I'd keep playing, if I ever do find a convenient game with such players. I'm hoping that I don't come across as an eejit to the people I'm playing against.
Anyway. Spent most of the weekend planted on the couch watching basketball (and hockey). The brackets got busted at the end of the very first game, when Ohio State lost to Dayton. Being a Michigan fan, couldn't feel too bad about the Buckeyes losing. Plus, I can't blame them for denying me my billion dollars (well, them, and Duke, and Oklahoma State, etc, etc, etc. Let's just say if I were doing the red pen correction thing, my brackets would have bled to death by the end of day one).
Amusing tidbit from the first day of the tournament proper. An Atlanta Falcons wide receiver, Roddy White, responded to a follower on twitter who boldly predicted Mercer would beat Duke in their first round matchup, by saying that he'd give the guy season tickets on the 50 yard line if Mercer did, indeed, beat Duke. Well, Mercer beat Duke, and instead of following through on his unsolicited offer, White backed down on that statement, eventually settling for giving the guy a pair of tickets for a single game. The fan is ok with this outcome - after all, he's getting something out of nothing.
But White is a guy who will be making 6.34 million this upcoming season. Following through on his pledge would cost him maybe $3000. In backing off his pledge, he claimed, among other things, that it was illegal to bet in the NFL, and tweeted, "Y'all people are crazy on twitter you want me to man up and pay a bet to a person that had nothing to lose in the bet #soundsridicules". Problem is, he's absolutely right - that wasn't a bet. He was under absolutely no obligation to make the statement, except for bragging on his prognostications skills (he had Duke advancing to the championship game). Apparently, he can talk the talk, and when proven to have just as much prognostication skill as the rest of us (i.e. precious little) wrong, he's only willing to walk 1/8th of the walk. I'm guessing he might end up making a pledge to the Mercer scholarship fund before this is all over - the school is located in the state of Georgia.
Saturday, March 01, 2014
So in the first hour of the first day of the third month of this year, I found myself heading east. Towards Canton. Michigan, not China, heading to a turn on a road just past the Arctic Edge ice arena, home of the Olympic champion ice dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White.
I could swear that wasn't there back in the 90s when I had friends who lived in Canton, and I used to head down Michigan ave on a semi regular basis. There was a lot less other stuff (stores, restaurants, etc) out that way, too. (Just looked it up, the ice arena opened up in 2001).
The reason for the late night foray came from a text I received at about 6:15 pm Friday evening, asking if I was available late night to pick up the guitar I'd won a few weeks ago, since at the time I'd said I could wait until Battlecross (the band that gave it away at the concert I went to see) came back from their European tour (so I could get to say hi and stuff, as I hadn't had the opportunity to meet them before). I had nothing planned for the evening so I agreed, even after the texter (the band manager) said it could be as late as 1 AM.
It turned out to be 1 AM, since, as I found out when I got to the manager's house (about a half hour drive from where I live), Battlecross were gathering for a meeting with their manager to get the tour merch all straightened out and finances all discussed before the boys headed out for their next tour. Which was to say, before they started driving, at 3 AM, to go to Buffalo for the first show of that next jaunt. So the 1 AM time made a tiny bit more sense.
It was interesting to see the manager in action, she had a nice spread laid out for the guys, including plenty of options for the two vegan eaters. She had kind of mother hen thing going on. Interesting, too, to get a peek behind the curtains of an operation like a band on the verge of heading off across the country, counting and folding the t-shirts, signing the CDs that would be on the merch table. I know a few musicians, including a few who have been fortunate enough to get signed to a label, or to get to go on a real tour, but I've never been privy to witness some of those last minute preparations (like the merch guy lamenting having left his good neck pillow at home). A bit ironic this was happening with a band whose members I'd never really met before, and had only seen play once.
The guys in the band were disgustingly normal (not that I expected anything different - like I said, I know a few heavy metal types). Had to decide, when I got there, whether I could address someone I'd never met before as Gumby (singer's nickname), but he shrugged it off. Probably used to it, half the people approaching at the merch tables after shows probably call him that.
I was at the manager's house for about an hour, indulging in a bit of the grub laid out (a few raspberries, a piece of the brisket, a bit of the seitan, and olives), shooting the breeze, getting a pic taken with the band, in which I'm sure I'll stick out horribly for having worn a bright yellow sweatshirt, when they were all wearing metal appropriate black sweatshirts, and then I left them to their business, wandering off into the night with my shiny green guitar.
Battlecross: Push, Pull, Destroy
Sunday, February 16, 2014
Having a massively blah few days. Barely want to stop in here and see whatís going on. Making myself type something out, just to do it, and if you are reading this, then it means I had more wherewithal than I suspected when I started scribbling around 1 AM, Sunday 16th Feb.
Why? Not sure. Work might play a role. Working from home, for an organization bringing in help for what they expected to be a busy period. Our (the outside help) role wasnít entirely defined, so it shifted a bit the first couple of weeks, and now weíre told weíre supposed to hit metrics that are proving a bit unrealistic. So thatís a bit stressful. Something to be said for just grinding away and doing whatís feasible. But our team leader is getting leaned on by the organizationís people, and in turn, we hear about it. In a nice way, of course, butÖit still weighs, yíknow?
So thatís me whining about work stuff, which you really donít care about. You probably also donít care to hear me whining about my utter lack of a social life. Woops. I mean, at this point, Iíd be shocked if I actually posted this as a blog. I mean, the self-Öloathing might not exactly be the right wordÖIím looking for more of a not-giving-much-of-a-crap synonym here, but Iím blanking, since itís 1:15 AMÖ.anyway, itís a cavalier attitude, borne yet again out of job uncertainty, and really not liking where I am in life at an age where stuff was supposed to be settled into some groove. And yes, I know, I know, this is America where you can just make it up as you go along until you find said groove. I loathe that platitude, even as I use it to describe my scattered path. Come to think, that may be why I loathe it.
Listening tonight to some Galactic Cowboys, one of so many bands that ďreally should have been so much biggerĒ. Not feeling rage myself, but the song ďFeel the RageĒ is a good place to start if youíve never heard the band before.
Take a trip, step outside
Of this fishbowl life
Voice recalls, ceramic youth
In pots of broken truth
Got carded again last night. Maybe when Iím 40, thatíll stop happening? Shouldnít have shaved, the growing grey patch in the beard would probably immunize me from having to pull out my ID.
The title that I just placed at the top of the MS Word document (since itís 2:15 now, and I might as well share the thinks rattling through my skullspace, right?) are from a different band, Extreme, and their song, ďStop the World,Ē www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ray4S
The mood Iím in, though, thereís a far more relevant track on the ďIII sides to every storyĒ album, called, ďAm I ever going to change?Ē that screams to be posted.
Please tell me if itís true, am I too old to start anew?
cuz thatís what I want to do.
But time and and time again, when I think I can
I fall short in the end
Reality says, I havenít fallen short. Mental short circuits are whispering Ďyetí.
Weight wise, I have fallen short. Mental short circuits are whispering, ďwhy try holding back the wave? Youíll only drown in the changesĒ
(apparently, a queensryche song has wormed its way into the matrix (specifically, ďMy Global MindĒ www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ms06N
Itís now 2:45 and I think Iím done rambling. Havenít scribbled anything worth anything in the last 15 minutes, so maybe itís time to flip the mental coin on whether to actually share this mess. Or wait until daybreak to make the decision. I think I wonít do that, though, since there are many pieces of broken memories contained in other late night ramblings that I chose NOT to share, for some reason or another. This one, I think, I won't bury, maybe?
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