Friday, December 16, 2005

Better Run, Run, Run, Run, Run

122 days out.

I officially started training for the 2006 Boston Marathon this week. I say officially because I am on an 18-week training schedule and this is week 1. Of course since in week 1 I'll be doing 53 miles, I've been building my base so my body can handle this load. I'm substantially stepping-up my mileage this time around. For Columbus 2003 my highest week was 40 miles....for Detroit 2004 I hit 50...this time around I'll be hitting 70 a couple of times. If you look over to the right I have a link to my running log where you can follow my progress if you so choose. I'll probably be commenting periodically here too. Most training plans start on monday and, traditionally, sunday is the long day -- anywhere from 13-22 miles. Being the anal-retentive person that I am, and the fact that the Boston Marathon is on a monday, my training weeks go from tuesday-monday so all runs will be on monday -- just like I'll be doing in April. The first day I had a great run -- 8 miles nice and steady with all splits between 7:09 and 7:15. I'll take that. :)

In conjunction with the running, I've started lifting again. The main goal is to strengthen my leg muscles so I can 1) handle the training I'll be doing, and 2) handle the hills that are infamous in Boston. After a few days of lifting again, I feel incredibly weak! Not that I've ever been a no-neck meathead, but even when I was lifting consistently 2 years ago I was able to put up a lot of weight. I just want some definition to an upper-body that has gone to pot with all of my running.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Birthday Parties, Cheescake

OK, this is a day late, but that is alright. A very happy 6th birthday to my neice Madelyn. She's a sweetie...a bit of a drama queen at times, but she's wonderful nonetheless. She's in kindergarten and learning a lot. She is also a budding swimmer which, of course, makes me happy.

There is something about the first week or so of December and birthdays. It seems like everyone and their mother has a birthday this week. Seriously. Here is a short list of people I know who've had birthdays in the past week: Myself, Darrell, Gabor, Jaime, Grandma, Dan, Brian, Sarah, Meghan, Angela, Madelyn, Liz, Roman, Stanley...I'm sure I"m forgetting some there too. I said there must be something about I take that back: there must be something about March. I guess spring arrives, the weather gets a little warmer, and parents feel the need to procreate.

Then there is the whole concept of the December birthday -- of course as you get closer to Christmas there is the aura of getting screwed out of gifts. I never thought this was a rational way of thinking. Let's take two brothers, Aaron and Bart. Aaron has a birthday in June while Bart has one in December (close to Christmas). The parents spend $50 on Aaron for his birthday and then another $50 on him for Christmas -- $100 total. The same amount should be spent on Bart, regardless of when his birthday is. If his birthday is on Christmas, then he will get $100 in presents, while Aaron gets only $50. Yes, there is the perception of favoritism/spending more, but when you bring Aaron's birthday into the picture it's an even deal.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

I Get My Kicks Above the Waistline, Sunshine

I watched the Knights of the South Bronx the other night. No particular reason why I watched it other then I saw a very-gray (or is it grey?) Ted Danson and thought he looked strikingly like some other no-name actor. Anyway in one scene a couple of neighborhood bullies confront Walt from Lost (new theory: the Others are really a street gang from the Bronx) and the one guy says "I thought you were gonna do me a solid" or something like that. Nothing special really, just ordinary dialogue...or maybe it is a devout Seinfeld fan such as myself who wrote this line. Yes. Way back in the day in the infancy of what is one of the greatest TV shows of all time, the one known as Kramer uttered such a line in an early episode regarding a suede coat and Elaine's Dad. Thanks the the enhancements on the DVDs, it was an early catch-phrase of Kramer's that never...erm...caught. I've used it myself on occasion and have gotten blank stares. So much for getting it into the vernacular. In the world of Seinfeldisms, I am also a fan of saying "You're sooo good looking" when someone sneezes. Try that and the world will be a better place.

I was at Best Buy awhile back and noticed that they are selling Seasons 1-3 of Seinfeld in a special edition box set. This box set comes with such things as pepper & salt shakers from Mort's and a copy of an early script. At that time I had a moment like many Star Wars fans do. George Lucas, being the egomaniac that he is, is constantly re-releasing new editions of his epic saga. First there was the original trilogy...then the original enhanced trilogy...then the special edition enhanced trilogy...then the directors cut special edition enhanced get the idea. Anyway, Star Wars fans are so fanatic about their movie that they will buy each one of these as they are realeased. Afterall, you're not a true fan if you don't have EVERYTHING. So yeah, I basically thought "Oh, I'll rebuy seasons 1-3 just so I can get the extra stuff." In other news, a couple days later I was seriously contemplating paying $45 for an R.E.M. mug at the R&RHOF&M.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

We're One But We're Not the Same

Rest of U2 Perfectly Fine with Africans Starving
Gotta love the Onion. I remember awhile back when I was reading the Onion when the offical female of MoL looked over my shoulder and mistook it for real news! I told her about the nature of American humor. Anyway, is it too late for me to get on the Bono backlash wagon? He just gets to be too much for me most of the time. Yes it is nice that you want to help people out, but do you have to be so vocal about it? I think I would agree with it more if he went about saving Africa in a more quite, behind-the-scenes way. Worry about your coif and making over-indulgant records. I was at home for Thanksgiving and was reading Time Magazine. They asked previous recipients of "Person of the Year" who should get it this year and someone mentioned Bono. C'mon now, not him! I could think of many people who would be more deserving then him. As someone brought up, how about Mother Nature? That would be a real good choice for Person of the Year.

Speaking of satirlical news forums...I'm really enjoying The Colbert Report. I'm digging it so much that I've given up watching the first half-hour of Leno so I can hear Stephen run his mouth on current events and politics. My only criticism is the theme music -- sounds too much like The Daily Show. He does a great amalgamation of Bill O'Reilly, Joe Scarborough, Rush Limbaugh, etc. I love it.

Monday, December 05, 2005

I'm Special, So Special

I'm the Geburtstagskind!

Not a whole lot to report here today, except to make sure to check out what Greer put up today.

I spent most of the weekend working on a paper and presentation. I was ready to go today, but due to time constraints, I got push-backed till wednesday. It is OK, though, as it appears I will be giving another kick-ass presentation.

I posted about this awhile back when I first found out about the blog, but if you haven't visited or heard about PostSecret, go do so now. The book just came out and looks to be one of the best-selling books for the Christmas shopping season. If you need to buy someone something I suggest this book. The images and writings can be extremely powerful and once you read one, you want to read them all.

Questionable Content

I first discovered this webcomic last january. I proceeded to start from the beginning and read them all in order to catch-up. Last week was the first time the action got pretty heavy. The author writes the comic full-time and makes money by selling t-shirts and other items. The comic is especially entertaining for 20-something hipsters who can identify with the topics in the comic.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Make it Charged With Controversy

Congress to look into BCS mess?
Ok, I don't mind Congress getting involved into sports when things such and performance enhancing drugs are being abused. But getting into the whole BCS debate. C'mon folks, don't you have better things to do like figuring out Health Care or Tax Reform.

I've been thinking about weighing in on the whole BCS debate for awhile. Up until this year I was a firm anti-BCS critic and felt that a playoff would be the best way to decide the national champ. I am now sold on the BCS. With the BCS you get two things. First, the whole season acts as a de facto playoff. In order to guarantee a spot in the BCS title game, a team has to run the table. This means each week is essentially a win-or-go-home scenario. If you are to lose, you want to lose early and then hope for help along the way. In a playoff scenario, a loss (or even two, see Ohio State, Notre Dame this year) does not hurt you as much. Secondly, the BCS has people talking about the pros and cons of the system. Every week it seems there is talk about if the BCS should stay or if it should go. You know that phrase "any publicity is good publicity" -- thats what I'm talking about. Also, since this year it is pretty much guaranteed that the Rose Bowl will be USC vs Texas, if there was a playoff, how many analysts would be chiming in about who shold play in the Fiesta Bowl? Side note, if either of these two teams lose this weekend, I would still support USC/Texas Rose Bowl -- these teams are that good. Even with a playoff -- 4 teams or 8 teams, there will be teams saying "we should be in there," so what point does it serve? If there is a change to be made, I would support a selection committe, much akin to one the NCAA uses for March Madness, to decide who plays in each of the 4 BCS Bowls. A selection committee is much more valid then using an ultra-complicated equation that is constantly being changed each year.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Take a Picture Here, Take a Souvenier

As I take a brief break from the usual crap I talk about, here are some pictures from the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Here is the family at the beginning of a wonderful meal

I was forced to include this one as it shows proof of me being domesticated. I sport the classic "are you really taking a picture of me drying dishes" look on my face.

Me and some unnamed girl on the busiest bar night of the year. Yeah she's quite wonderful.

Madelyn and Elliot decide to wrestle with Uncle Mark immediately after I gorge myself on Thanksgiving Dinner. These two have 2 uncles, myself and my brother-in-law's brother. I feel there is an unspoken rivalry between the two of us. I asked them if their Uncle Brad wrestles with them like that and they said "no." Point for Uncle Mark.

The immortal Spice Girls performance

LHS class of '97 alumni singing "Love Shack."