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Sunday, November 28, 2004

Been getting in some GREAT runs recently, have felt REALLY good! Been able to get my mileage back up to 7 or so miles/morning, 5-6X/week (weather permitting!) even ran this morning (I usually take Sundays off from working out) and it was nice enuf out to wear shorts again for a change, not too cold (this was before it rained- poured, actually!- later in the day.) Those extra Thanskgiving calories are gonna go away if I have anything to say about it! ;)

Hadda go to a wake this afternoon down where I grew up. A friend of mine from high school's mother passed away over the weekend; she was always a very sweet woman. Wakes are perhaps some of the most difficult events to attend; finding the right things to say to people who are grieving while not trying to be too bothersome, or maudlin. And it was sad also because my friend's mother reminds me in many ways of my own mom, and the thought of her mortality is something I prefer not to have to confront, yet the passing of someone close to her in age, background, etc... made me give pause to that. Sadly, I hadn't seen either my friend nor any of the rest of his family in a number of years, and except for him, none of 'em recognized me at first, as the years, as well as changes in my appearance, apparently have made a difference. I felt- and feel- bad about that, the years thing. Over the last several years now I have let so many longtime friendships drift; not due to any disagreements, arguments, etc....but rather due to my simply not having, taking, or making, adequate time to sustain them, and/or differing life priorities, lifestyles, etc...(many/most of 'em married w/ kids, while I, obviously, am not.) I am one who appreciates tradition, the time-honored, loyalties, old ties, those sorts of things, and it causes me more than a little discomfort when I realize that my "real" falls so short of my "ideal" in terms of how I honor those things. Sometimes I think perhaps I place too much emphasis upon them; I don't like to believe I am stuck in/a slave to, the past, my past, but there may be more than a little truth to that. I sometimes marvel at people who seem to be able to re-create themselves almost at will; even more, those who easily seem able to embrace bold, new, exciting futures and destinies while retaining ties to the best of their pasts, and casting off those things that, tho' part of them, no longer fit. But while I marvel and admire much of that, at the same time part of my thinks it is the height of selfishness, putting aside long-held and once-cherished things, be they friendships, careers, lifestyles, beliefs, or ideas, for seemingly "selfish" reasons.

Ack...a rainy nite, and I think too much.

"So I went from day to day/Tho' my life was in a rut/'Til I thought of what I'd say/Which connection I should cut..."

Friday, November 26, 2004

With a lil extra time to kill/goof off this morning...

GREAT run this morning, a very good 7 miles! Sun was bright, sky was blue, a crisp, chilly, breezy-but-not-bitter morning. I've felt good the last few weeks, have been able to inch my mileage up a lil more while still keeping at a decent, albeit not record-breaking, pace. Hadda run off all of the eats I indulged in yesterday! Actually, I didn't overstuff myself but rather just ate a LOT more carb-y food than I almost always do; oyster stuffing, mashed potatoes, dinner rolls, desserts, mmmmmmm! Good, but very carb-laden (and unlike some folks- whom I despise! Jes' kiddin'!- who can eat and eat and eat seemingly whatever they want, do only a modest amount of exercise, and never gain a pound, I can simply LOOK at food and gain 5 lbs!) I typically maintain a higher protein/lower carb diet regimen (and I have one friend who always gags whenever I tell her what my typical diet consists of!) so yesterday was definately a cheat day (but good!)

I've probably mentioned it here before, but Thanksgiving may well be my favorite holiday. Yeah, Christmas is always fun and all, but there's something about Thanksgiving- maybe it's the weather, maybe it's the food, maybe it's the football (unless, of course, you're a long-suffering Detroit Lions fan...right, Deannie?! Yikes, THAT was an ugly one yesterday!) maybe it's the family and friends deal, maybe its just the brevity of it, but I've always found it to be perhaps the nicest holiday on the calendar.

One thing I've NEVER understood, however, is the great rush to go out and Christmas shop the day after Thanksgiving. Why? Why would anyone subject themselves to the crowds, the early hours, and the excessive hype of the aptly named "Black Friday?" Are the deals that good that they make all of the hassle worth it? Do these shoppers believe that, if they don't buy it NOW! TODAY! the stores will run out of the desired item, gift, etc...never to stock it again until March?! I think I'd rather have a root canal done...

18-12, Good Guys! ;)

"Over the river and through the woods/To grandmother's house we go..."

Monday, November 22, 2004

I went to a fight the other nite...and a basketball game broke out! Badda-bing! (They don't call me 'Shecky' Kerrigan for nuthin'! In fact, they don't at all! :) Poor Ron Artest, suspended for the remainder of the season...why DO bad things happen to such good people?! At least now he'll have the opportunity to put that St. John's education to good use, yeah...or resume that rap "career" that had him SO drained he requested some time've got it now, sport! And also, I hope that any of the "fans" involved do not receive a penny in any kind of civil suit- you pay your money for your ticket, you're entitled to cheer, boo, yawn, to your heart's content, but you're not entitled to toss things at nor assault or invade the player's sphere. In all seriousness, that was a truly ugly incident all around, one that could have ended far more tragically than just a few spilled beers and a few bruised faces (and egos.) As much as I love basketball as a sport, both to play and to watch (I love the college game...and liked much of the past summer's Olympic basketball) I have not been a fan of the NBA in a long time. No, not just because the Celtics have struggled for so long but because of the "style" of play in the NBA; very little teamwork, very little fundamental soundness, relatively few likeable players (it's pretty bad when one of my few favorites in today's game comes from China...or when Shaq of all players is one of the less objectionable.) As objectionable has been the way the league has tried to market their game; ie, not toward anyone over 30 and/or non-urban. Yeah, I'm a Celtics fan, but I admit, I appreciated the play of the Lakers of the 80's, and the Sixers, the Jordan-era Bulls, even to a degree the late 80's Pistons, as there were still MANY players who were fundamentally sound and appreciated the team concept that is basketball. Now it seems to have become largely a league of sullen street-ballers, and outright thugs (Mr. Artest, this is you. Mr. Sprewell, same thing. And many- too many- others.) As every Al Bundy knows..."There is no "I" in "team."

And also the brawl between the South Carolina and Clemson football teams- what's goin' on here? Or the Steelers and the Browns the week before? (Of course, no one- except for the one idiot who will always take of his helmet and start swinging it- ever gets hurt in a football fight! :) Folks have to learn to keep their emotions in check- play with passion, not stupidity.

And in hindsight, these make the whole brouhaha over the MNF Nicollette Sheridan/Terrell Owens promo seem pretty foolish, huh? (as for that one- a dumb idea? Yeah, as I doubt much of the MNF demographic would be wanting to follow "Desperate Housewives" on a steady basis. But hardly the threat to civilization as we know it...the indignant comments about racy subject matter from a league that carries wall-to-wall ads for Viagra, etc...and the idiocy about how it was a "racially charged" promo? Please...I thought we were beyond that by now...)

I'm sure the opening segment for tonite's Pats-Chiefs game will be milk and cookies pure!

"All my rowdy friends are coming over tonight!"

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Random thoughts a week out from Thanksgiving...

I came across a story this afternoon about a dolphin that is now able to jump once again, thanks to being fitted with an artificial fin. Now, I have nothing against dolphins, I watched Flipper when I was a kid, and the company that made the fin gave it to the aquarium where the dolphin is kept for free, but the story stated it cost about $95,000. Again, I have nothing against dolphins, but, and call me species-centric, when there are HUMANS going without limbs, or in need of glasses, or aids to hear, they young or old, when there are HUMANS who are going hungry, or otherwise suffering, shouldn't THEY be, if not more entitled, certainly more worthy of help than a dolphin, or any animal? (Yes, this may rile up the PETA folks, but too bad.) I dunno...

In a similar vein (and perhaps I should've phrased that differently, given the following, but... :) all of these products, meds and such, on the market for, ahem, "ED." Again, I have nothing against people seeking help for that particular problem, I imagine it must be something sad to deal with. And being the free-marketeer that I am, if a pharmaceutical company sees a demand for such a product, more power to them I suppose. But...and not to minimize "ED" but in the grand scheme of illnesses, diseases, medical problems, etc...might there not be a few that, um, rise to a greater level of importance of spending time and money on finding treatment, if not cures, for? Cancers, anyone? MS? ALS? AIDS? Countless others?? I'm no raving idealist, but still, it makes you wonder...

On to a different topic...I read an article the other day that gave me pause. It began:
"Maybe it's a function of getting older, or perhaps I've just convinced myself that I'm too busy, but it's been a long time since I learned a new skill..."
And it struck me; I cannot remember the last time I tried learning a new skill or such. NOT simply becoming more adept, more proficient at something I already do or know, but picking up/trying something new. Spending more time on something that I've neglected (such as writing) might count to a degree, or expanding on that, but even more, just picking up or trying something utterly new. Perhaps something new in/to my workout/fitness regimen- yoga? A spinning class perhaps? Pilates? I've always, in the back of my mind, had a bit of an interest in trying to learn Irish; not that it would do anything for my career, but simply to learn the language, to be able to read and speak beyond a few phrases with some proficiency. If I find I could fit any in, I'd like to explore some sort of relevent, meaningful volunteer work, but right now its very nebulous to me what exactly I would like to do in that regard. This is something I'm gonna have to think on some...

Had a GREAT run and workout today anyway! ;)

"If it makes you happy/It can't be that bad/If it makes you happy/Then why the hell are you so sad?"

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Don't forget to remember- and thank!- a vet.

Happy Veteran's Day :)

"From sea to shining sea..."

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

The ol' frost is on the pumpkin now...BRRRRRRRRRRR!!!

We've had some FROSTY mornings the last two days here! I've been good, got in my 6 miles both mornings but yikes, was it nippy! At least it hasn't been too windy, and the sun's been bright, but wow, a lil too cool for this early in November...just a quick entry this morning, but I wanna apologize for getting a lil behind in much of my email correspondance; I'll get caught up soon, I promise, it has NOTHING to do with anyone whom I've yet to get back to, I just got behind...bad girl!

"You lively up yourself, and don't say no/You're gonna lively up yourself 'cuz I said so."

Friday, November 05, 2004

Some truly bad bar jokes!

A jumper cable walks into a bar. The bartender says, "I'll serve you, but don't start anything."
A sandwich walks into a bar. The bartender says, "Sorry we don't serve food in here."
A man walks into a bar with a slab of asphalt under his arm and says: "A beer please, and one for the road."

Ugh! :)

"It's only half past twelve, but I don't care/It's five o'clock somewhere..."

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Congratulations to President Bush on his re-election! (It was my endorsement that put him over the top, I just know it! Hehehe :) If not a mandate, certainly he and his party won a solid plurality; it is up to them to deliver, to make good on their promises and proposals as best they can. And while remaining true to the ideas and policies and proposals which they campaigned- and won- on, they must endeavor to govern on behalf of all Americans, those who supported them, and those who did not.

Similarly, best wishes to Senator Kerry. His graciousness in defeat (and what a tough thing that must be, being rejected in such a highly public way as a Presidential election) and willingness to accept the verdict of his fellow citizens was a welcome contrast to the debacle of 2000, and speaks well of his personal integrity. And just as the Republicans in power must so must the minority Democrats also endeavor to overcome the divisiveness and rancor that has infected our politics. Those elected, while remaining true to the ideas they campaigned upon, must recognize that their's is a minority view, and as such, offer informed and principled opposition when warranted, but not reflexively and knee-jerkedly demagogue against any and all proposals offered by the President and his party.

Q: Who said the following (answer below)- "There is nothing patriotic about hating your country, or pretending that you love your country but despise your government."

More tolerance, more good-will, must be displayed by partisans on both sides, the chattering classes, the punditocracy, and Joe and Jane Citizen. I was visiting a (non-political) chat room last evening, and the levels of, not merely disappointment, but rabid, uninformed, scurrillous invective some were spewing upon our President, mere hours after the election was decided, was appalling and classless. No graciousness, not even intelligent discourse, just crass name-calling toward our President, his party, and anyone who chose to support same. And these from people who would be the first to tout their "inclusiveness," their "tolerance," their committment to "diversity." Yes, I've gone off on this before, but sadly it is true- some of the least tolerant people I have come across are self-described "liberals." They reflect poorly upon their more open-minded peers (just as the worst elements of the Right do upon theirs.)

A: President Bill Clinton, May 1995. (Words for those who hate and/or despise the current President, Adminstration, and government to consider.)

Hopefully this will be the last politically-oriented post, at least for a lil while. Time to come together, to focus on what unites us as Americans, and how we can best translate those values to the world. God bless the United States of America.

"Meet the New Boss/Same as the Old Boss..."