Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Nice to not have anything notable happen!

November 19 - 25, 2018

Monday (7) - Decreased the walk to 30 seconds.  That worked well.  My heart rate wasn't all over the place like it had been and I had a bit more energy with less of a break.  Although the last few 4 minute run sections I was constantly checking my watch to see how.much.longer.   I'm pleased to see my run pace pretty consistent and the whole 6-mile loop with an 11:15 pace.  Not sure what my next step is with the walk/run business but definitely my body does get used to that break and while it was looking for another 30 seconds it seemed content to move forward.   My knees were ouchy in the afternoon, but no worse than usual.

A favorite! I can only find this in Ohio. 

The odd side effects of the Prednisone aside, I'm happy to run 6 miles at a time at whatever pace or process.  Oh yeah and actually REMEMBER things and find the right word quickly, wow, who knew how much inflammation impacts the brain.  Owning and navigating a dysfunctional body is not a lot of fun.

A rock with a big goofy smile and a heart over his left eye!

Tuesday (2) - Core work for lunch, not all that exciting, however necessary.  My hips and glutes are weak and always have been.  Might as well work on them on my off days.  Jax and I had a short stroll after dinner.  He was far more concerned with what was going on in the kitchen and Dave needed him out from underfoot while he was cooking.  Possibly me also, based on the "So you are going to stand in my way" comment.  Huh, I say that at least 7 times a week, he gets to say it, and feel like he can be annoyed twice a year when he cooks?  Life isn't fair, never was meant to be.  If it was Wednesday night when he usually does the Thanksgiving cooking Jax and I would be at Grey Sail me having a beer and Jax snacks to prevent him from being obnoxious.  Jax went back to being underfoot when we got back, you never know something good could drop on the floor!  Dogs are forever the optimists!

My beer connection from NH came through!

Wednesday (8.2) - Ro was back from Aruba on Tuesday night and still up for hills, but please let's go slow.  I kinda figured all the excitement over her engagement would keep her at her usual peppy pace and me gasping for breath, not so much.  It was fun to catch up and hear how this engagement played out.  I was very surprised by this news.  I couldn't ferret out if they planned on getting engaged or this was a surprise.  They are both very happy and I'm happy for them.  Mazeltov!

Deep in conversation about not eating deer poop.

Dave and I took Jax out for a hike in Arcadia, I enjoyed the trails, I don't know much about them but that will be where I'll ride my mountain bike once I get back to that.

Thursday (0) - Kinda thought this was going to be one of those days.  We left early for Dave's folks house, trying our best to get everyone moving a bit earlier so we can get the kitchen cleaned up and his parent's house somewhat put back together after the other siblings and their families leave.  Dave's mom fought starting dinner early, but I think she is beginning to understand why Dave pressures her, Dave's father reported she was in bed asleep by 9 and he expected she'd be sleeping late.  My MIL texted the next morning saying it was really nice to only have a few things to straighten out.  Which means I put the sliver back in the wrong places!  Whooops.  I did try and match up where things were, and then made a few guesses.

Friday (5) - Decided to take Jax out to the Boy Scout Camp Yawgoog, and ended up turning the wrong way so we went to another part of Patchaug, a trail named Laurel Loop.  I assumed it was a loop, well it probably IS a loop I just didn't realize that I had to loop back on a different trail.   We had an adventure with me sliding into a puddle, Jax getting the bejeebers scared out of him by some barking dogs, and me loosing, and then finding my cell phone.  I only had the damn phone out to turn on Strava so I could see if I could figure out where I was based on the map.  Unfortunately the trails didn't pop up on the Strava GPS, sometimes they do, sometimes they don't.   I figured out how to get to a road and then how to get back to the car.    I was fun and actually more fun than a run.  Jax and I were wet muddy messes when we got home.

He HATES selfies. 
Plus he looks more gray than he actually is.

Saturday (9) - Met up with Faith to hike at Bluff Point, I'm just not ready to run with people.  We meandered this way and that on the somewhat ok marked trails, looped back on each other, found sunglasses and biking booties we hung on a tree so the biker could find them, hoped that we weren't going to find body parts.

Laurel Loop which wasn't a loop, but had a LOT of laurel!

Took Jax on a short hike to Woody Hill to see if I could connect a few things, I think I managed to bridge the gaps.  Jax was tired, yet happy to get out.  Not at all happy with all the gun shots, he stuck to me like velcro a few times.  Poor guy.

Sunday (2) - Lazy day, it was supposed to rain all day but it didn't.  The sun was decent in the morning I took advantage of that and picked up the stitches for the collar on the new sweater. Faith met up with Jax and I for a short hike. Jax is definitely getting older and taking longer to recover.  I met up with Rachel for dinner, gossip, and a beer trade.  Mostly it was what she requested from MI & OH, with two extras from me.  I'll be interested to see how the Nutter Your Business Peanut Butter Stout goes over with the two people I gave it to.

I need to dust more.


I'm cooking on the latest cardigan, the collar has been completed to the cowl part and I started the button holes last night. I'm a bit fearful the arms won't relax and be too tight, but who knows once water and detergent hit the wool and the whole thing gets a bath and then laid out to dry.   Guess that's why I was supposed to wash the gauge swatch?   

In the interim time when I didn't want to cast on the collar, not enough light, I whipped up a baby sweater, except I have to now go trash diving and find the last few bits of yarn so I can sew up the arms!  Whoopsie.  I think that was my last skein of acrylic. 

Now, time to start plotting my next project....  hmmmm...


by Ron Chernow

Status:  Finished

I loved this book.  Chernow spins a good story around the bland and boring facts of a persons life.  I think it helps when the person is a character!  Rockefeller became more of a character as he aged, took on more of the personality of his father and being an old codger got a way with a lot old codgers don't get away with these days!

"The Warburgs"
by Ron Chernow

Status:  Started

The narration is a bit boring, and it is more facts and figures and lineage, but a few gems of information.  I did not realize the Jews ventured into banking because they were forced into the marginal occupations of tax collection, rent collection, and money lending.  Clearly they made the best of the bad situation antisemitism foisted on them.  I've simplified the history. 

Overall the book is a little confusing as it isn't about one person, however a full family and the marriage into that family. 

Beth, I thought it was a pretty quiet week, but it was a pretty normal week.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Quiet week

Monday (764) - Back home.  Picked up a hitchhiker and the drive took the usual hour longer than the drive out.

The Hitchhiker

Tuesday (2) - Got to the gym, no shorts.  Well, that's a first, usually, it's the sports bra I forget.  Nice day to run to, the temps were due to continue dropping, and the wind kicks up, and it did.  I took Jax for a walk when we got home.  He actually seemed kind of into an in-town walk and wanted to explore some new streets.

It wasn't supposed to be for him, he gave on a compelling argument.

Wednesday (4) - Remembered my shorts, should have brought capris it was a wind chill of 27 with the gusty wind off the water probably colder than that, kind of a shock to my knees.  Extra special run because I had new shoes.  I was pretty sure in the beginning of the year when I bought the Brooks Transcend I'd probably not need to get a new pair of running shoes all year, well yeah, pretty much.  With 350 miles on them, it was time for a new pair and I got a cushy pair of Brooks Adrenaline.  I toyed with Hoka but I think they are so tall I'd fall off them and twist my ankle like I was doing with the Asics Cumulus till I finally put it all together and put them in the donation bin.   I meandered here and there, it was so cold by the water I went into the neighborhood by the golf course to get out of the wind, but still would have to face the north wind down Eastern Point (or Shennecosett) to get back to campus.

Thursday (3/4) - Core work for lunch, boring and necessary.  The snow started just before I left work and it was a fun drive home, people come up with some creative ways to drive for the first snow.  Took Jax to the High School to let him run around in the snow for a little bit.  He was happy to get out some goofies, I enjoyed playing in the snow too.

Wooohooo!  Off leash and loving it.  -- Jax

Friday (7) - Run at lunch, the wind kept me in the neighborhood behind the golf course, still had to fight the wind North on Eastern Point, the walking comes in handy then!  Although it's getting a little chilly for a 1-minute walk, I should make it 30 seconds so I don't freeze!   We took Jax to Burlingame.

Jax and the Imaginary Husband

Saturday (5.8) - Course marking for the last 4 miles of the Lil' Rhody Run around.  I wasn't sure if I'd have help or not.  I did!  John, we didn't know each other but he was a chatterer and I'm a listener and that works well.  He too gets lost in a straight line AND he and his wife have an Airstream!  We had lots of things to talk about.    Dave and I took Jax to Browning Mill area of Arcadia for a hike, lots of snow still on the ground in land!

Grrrr stop messing with me and Maxine.  -- Jax

Sunday (5) - Spectating at Lil' Rhody Runaround and then Dave and I took Jax to Woody Hill.  I hadn't been there in a few years and was curious about the new mountain bike trails, Jax enjoys something new to him it worked out well for all of us.  These are trails more my speed for mountain biking, I'll feel a bit more comfortable exploring them on my bike now.  Gus and I went out there a few times, but he really hated being in the car so we didn't go to far away from home often.  And by far I mean more than a 5 minute drive. He was a disaster after 5 minutes.

Woody Hill


Finished the other arm of the sweater, sewed up the shoulder seams, marked the button placement, and where the cowl neck becomes the button band.  Next is picking up for the collar.   I messed this up even on my second try with the green sweater.  I picked up too many stitches per inch and it sags.  I could frog the whole thing AGAIN,  but, it does give the sweater a bit of a worn in look, and I don't dislike that.  Definitely the yarn was all wrong, the sweater needs a nice stiff and sticky wool, not a drapey merino.  Live and learn.  The new sweater is the correct yarn, although it seems a bit more stiff and sticky than I'd like, but I bet it will bloom a bit softer once I wash it.

In a quandary for something to knit because it was too early to start dinner, and to dark to pickup the stitches for the collar on the other sweater. I fished out a baby sweater I cast on a few months back, and knit a few rows, that did the trick and I managed to remember a list of things I needed to do!  I don't sit still well.


"The Tattooist of Auschwitz"
by Heather Morris

Status: Finished

Very good story, it was a bit rushed at the end. Otherwise worth the time to read.

by Ron Chernow

Status:  In-progress

Continuing to be fascinating.  Cettie, his wife, has just passed away in NY and it was quite an ordeal getting her to the family plot in Cleveland.


A quiet week, nothing spectacular.  Happy to see a bunch of people on Sunday at Lil' Rhody Runaround.  I do miss the running community.  I'm always stunned at how thoughtful people are and how much they remember from our last conversations.   Running must make people smart?

Beth, thinking she should enjoy the down time before the manic panic between Thanksgiving and the end of the year starts.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Big Miles this week, ha ha!

November 5, 2018 - November 11, 2018

Monday (6.1)  I did the usual loop clockstupid or the direction the competitive runners run it.  I saw no one.  It was rather dull.   For a walk/run it's getting peppier too.  Hmmm...  I contemplate dropping the walk part, frankly, I like the break and seriously, am I ever going to be running in a race again?  Then again I never thought I'd get to 5 miles, so who knows.  It was also supposed to rain, it didn't. Probably why the competitive (smart) runners didn't go out.  I didn't bother getting the extra 0.10 to get to a 10K.  I did that Strava challenge BS for the month.  I'll see how my body does with a 'real' run a couple times a week and reassess.  I was tired going into the run and tired coming out of the run, and fat, don't forget fat, isn't that something runners complain about?  Being fat and having no ass?  I'm not fat.  I've been fat and at the moment I'm not fat.  Sturdy, not fat.  Ha ha ha

Quite boozy!!

I'm reeling after finding out a friend was gifted signed divorce papers for her 19th wedding anniversary.  I knew her world was topsy-turvy, but shit, what a pisser.  They were an unlikely couple, perfectly suited in their unlikeliness.  There are couples you know aren't going to last, or they are going to be drama city till death do they part, this was not one of them.  I stood up for them, I believed in them. I'm heartbroken, actually.

Went to the packy after work and did a little Christmas and Birthday shopping for my Dad.  I can leave the bottles there when I visit my parents this weekend.  Shipping alcohol is kind of a no-no and eventually, this is all going to go pear-shaped on me.  Better to be prepared in the event the weather is as predicted and the snow is flying come December, and this is the year my 'vinegar' shipment goes wildly wrong.  Sorry, Mom.

Tuesday (5.7) - Hills with Ro, a day early she and her boyfriend are taking the Groton Senior Citizen bus trip to Newport.  One of the benefits of being over 58 and retired.  Go for it.  When I got to Ro's house she was being interviewed by the local TV news station.  I made myself scarce until they left and even then they still got a shot of us walking away.  The second time in my life I've been on TV.  We had a moderately peppy walk in the mist.  Once I dropped her off at her house, the skies opened up and my last 1/2 mile turned into a run back to campus. 

This was pretty tasty!

I stopped at the local yarn store with my green sweater and asked for help finding buttons.  Elizabeth was awesome and I love the buttons and in fact the sweater.  After finishing it over a year ago, then ripping out the collar because it wasn't right, and then re-knitting and then letting it sit for the summer and contemplating buttons, it was time to get this thing finished up and wear it in my drafty open space at work. 

Finished sweater

Wednesday (5.3) - A sunny run!  I meandered around enjoying the sun and running through the dry leaves on the side of the road.  Don't worry, they weren't piled there for pick up they were naturally collected so I didn't disturb someone's hard work.   I'm amazed I didn't squish through a dog poop or two, they do get lost in the leaves.  This was a tougher run, I expected that after having run on Monday and then hills on Tuesday. 

Sunshine showing me just how big her mouth is and how much of my arm she can bite if I dare pet her.

My sweater was nice and warm and snugly.  I'm excited to get the next one finished it is a heavier wool.

Thursday (764) - drive out to MI

Friday (1) - Snow!

Good Morning snow!
Saturday (0) 

Just a touch of snow

Sunday (0)

Not sure what the shoes over the wire signify for the University of Michigan students,
but they were along the whole block.


I finished the body and one sleeve and started on the second sleeve.  Quite pleased with how well this is knitting up!

Gatsby my knitting buddy.
Mostly he left the yarn alone.


by Ron Chernow

Status:  Finished

Interesting. I don't follow political figures well.  Chernow is an engaging writer, it's me not him with this particular subject.  I learned a few things I didn't know and the book didn't seem to have a particular slant to it, I found that nice.  It is rather tiring trying to decipher reality from slant with current events. 

by Ron Chernow

Status:  In Progress

I love John Davison Rockefeller, I'll admit it.  There is just something about this capitalist that intrigues me.  Maybe it is his humble beginnings, maybe it is his ability to squeeze the Lincoln off a penny, maybe it is his generosity, I'm not really sure.  He was frugal and fastidious and calculated and cunning and it served him well, and his family after, and so many people through his foundations and philanthropy.  

"The Tattooist of Auschwitz" 
by Heather Morris

Status:  In Progress

A love story, no really, in the midst of the horror in Auschwitz where he, Lale, a Slovakian Jew is a prisoner, this man meets a woman, Gita, and they fall in love.  I'm just at that point in the story.  He is employed by the SS tattooing prisoners the SS keeps, hence the name and how he met Gita.

Beth, lots of miles on the car this week, but I got in my miles before I left so I was happy to take a break for a few days and be a slug, knit, chat with my parents, and watch television.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Spooky Night Hike!

October 29, 2018 - November 4, 2018

Monday (5.2) - Crazy storms in the morning, crazy wind while I ran. I am enjoying running to music again, even my Detroit playlist, well maybe not Journey, too many skeevy memories of dances on Friday night, shudder.

Amy gave me a pass to try out Boxing at Barre Coast Boxing.  When the instructor asked me 'any injuries' we both giggled and Amy said, 'Might be easier to list what's not broken?'  I laughed and the instructor looked horrified I said, 'the only concern is my knees so I won't be doing much if any jumping.'

The class was fun, exhausting, my first double in quite some time.  I was a little nervous about how my body would react.  It didn't react like my sick body reacted last time I tried that foolishness.  The class alternated between 5 minutes of different punches to a heavy bag, which was more like a super thick balloon filled with water, and 5 minutes of core and upper body work.  Not sure why we needed to do overhead presses probably to counter the punching, jabbing, hooking, uppercutting, and crossing?  I worked up a good sweat, my knees didn't hate me, score!

He's melting

Tuesday (7 + 9.6) - Hills with Ro then I was off to mountain bike with Jess.  Yeah, not a heavy work day.  That is what vacation time is for.  Ro and I talked about how sometimes we get so focused on the day to day we forget to spend time with people we don't often see.  Jess is one of those people.  For the first time, I asked her if she was available to meet up to ride Haley and Bluff.  She's been to Bluff but didn't know how to get to Haley from Bluff and didn't know anything about Haley.  I'm fairly confident in getting myself unlost there so what the hell.  We met up at 2 p.m. and zipped over to Haley and explored, going in circles as one does when they explore and then venturing to the other side of the gravel path on to trails I had only been on a few times with Gizmo and had never gotten to from where we entered them.

It was fun zipping around on the trails, I almost felt like I knew what I was doing.  These trails are for sure my speed!

Dave is sick and Jax needed a walk, and I needed to take some stuff back to the library so I took care of all that and scrubbed a few crazies off Jax.  Jax was on his worst behavior.  I think he finally got it how ticked off I was with him and he behaved himself after a particularly stupid thing he did.

Wednesday (5.5) -  Walk the long way to lunch got me out in the fresh air which helped my perspective once I realized I had meetings till 5 and my plan to take Jax to the woods to hike trails that would make the GPS shape of a ghost might not happen.  I'm stubborn, of course, I attempted it, of course I did, with the sun setting at 5:44 p.m. and us getting to the woods at 5:50 p.m. per when I started my GPS, this was really stupid.  But we did it anyway, on trails I am not completely familiar with on a course that probably can't even connect.  It was DARK, DARK DARK and there are reflectors on some of the trail markers, I think they are bicycle wheel reflectors (the ones that go between the spokes), one side peeks out of either side of the trail marker and they look like eyes.  I saw other eyes too but we aren't going to talk about that, because they weren't eyes, they were errant bicycle spoke reflectors, yes, yes they were.

Imagine, at night, your headlamp catches the reflector, spaced about a nose width apart.

I should add that Dave and I have been watching "The Haunting of Hill House" and I kept thinking about that while walking and then I'd spook my self with a shadow of the headlamp, or Jax would jump at something.  It really was comedic, I'm sure.

Then your headlamp catches this red one,

When I passed by the place where the Vin Gormely meets the OutenBack, and I do know that intersection quite well, I should have caught it much closer than 1/2 mile down the trail.  I kept saying, hmmm, I don't think this is before the OutenBack until I got to a stream crossing with the three granite slabs (going clockwise on the VG) and we turned around.  I know things are different in the dark and short distances do feel like long distances.

The three granite slabs over the river/stream

We got out of the woods about 7:30 p.m. and I texted Dave to let him know we were on our way home.  He was in Boston meeting with a musician who will be doing recordings with his new Christopher Bass Guitar.  He didn't think he'd be home till about 9:30 p.m.  Ok good, that explains why he hadn't texted asking where we were.  He had no idea about my hair-brained idea.  When I told him he just shook his head and said, "You know that was dumb, right? Why didn't you do Jax's normal loop?"  The whole but the ghost GPS was completely lost on him. Kind of reminded me of the conversation Mikey and I had earlier where he reminded me that a pedestrian got killed on Route 2, and I should never ride on that road.  But how would I get to Route 49 for Tour de Farms?

This was a one-eyed orange monster.
Jax in the background  Oh yeah the silver on his vest is reflective.

Thursday (0) Big old fat zero and I didn't even get the 100% activity level on my watch.  Dave was able to gather up enough strength to take Jax to Arcadia for a hike and get out in some fresh air.  Guess his man flu was ok for a few hours.  Meanwhile, I'm washing my hands and soaking everything in Lysol, and feel fine. Fingers crossed it lasts.

We watched the last episode of The Haunting of Hill House.  It was very disappointing.

Friday (6.2) - I ran the whole work loop, well walk/run 1:00/4:00, in the rain, it was freaking fabulous.  One wouldn't think I'd feel that extra mile, but I did.  That was the first time I'd run that loop since July 2017, and I hadn't run a 10K since December 2017.

Anybody who follows me on Strava saw this picture before, in fact, I recycle a lot of the pictures.  But anyhoodles, the story this tells is very interesting to me.  See where things started getting all wonky right before they plummeted to my slowest run ever on that course (10/24/2016)?  That was early 2016, when my injuries started, funny the signs our bodies send us and the story metrics reveal.  of course I've run this in both directions and the above doesn't show the clockstupid direction, just the clockwise.  That odd duck above the average line, that was on 2/12/17 was when I ran with Faith, running with someone does make a difference.

Oh and the 11/15/12 was a run after I completed my first marathon, clearly I was feeling pretty peppy!

What am I going to do with this knowledge?  Remind myself I am seeing progress, it is slow, however, it is pretty consistent in the correct direction.

Saturday (2.8) - Girls Night Out to celebrate a birthday and retirement all in one fell swoop was filled with laughs, and way too much heavy food.  Gak I was feeling that in my stomach and the run in my knees, but Jax was going bazonkers, so bored.

I took him out and the Imaginary Husband, who is now at about 75% healed from Man Flu, came with us.  I plugged the route into the GPS and had Jeeves give us directions on where to turn.  None of the trails in that section are marked, well Sammy C's is, but otherwise no.  It worked!  We made the Ghost!!  Yippieee I was so thrilled.  Dave and Jax could care less.  Whateves man whateves.

I watched the first part of "I, Tonya" that Dave was watching when I got home on Friday.  I didn't pay much attention to Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan, other than the fact the knee bashing happened in Detroit.  I had to look up the year 1994, I was working my first Jobby Job at FoMoCo and never was much into getting wrapped up in the latest social drama.  Shortly following that was OJ Simpson which I only remember because Andrew came over that day to not talk about his mother's cancer, she passed a few days later (June 1994).

Sunday (3.2) - My intended Mountain Bike ride was thwarted by a very sad looking Jax.  I took him on a hike on his usual loop backward.  We ran and played and he brought sticks to me to play 'stick' and it was nice to be outside in the sun and fresh air. 


Finished the back and fronts, and on to the sleeves!


by Ron Chernow

Status: in progress

I have forever been amazed at how much history I don't know and amazed at how much history other people think they know based on a 2 sentence meme.   Taken out of context anything can be made to mean anything.  That point is driven home in Thomas Jefferson's opinions of Alexander Hamilton based on hearsay and second-hand knowledge.  It is epically amazing to me how much isn't known about the history of our country and how much of what is known is biased based on the sources of this information, or skewed to make a particular point.   All that aside Hamilton is the father of the excise tax on whiskey to pay for the government.  At least that is how I'm interpreting what I read.  Guess I'll have another beer and pay for the mess this country is in.

Beth, a week where she didn't have to think about running she just did it and enjoyed it.