Run. Dog. Cat. Cat. Me.

Everything you need to know about running and life and any other random crap I find bouncing through my mind like a ping pong ball. And always be sure your shoes are happy.

Archive for the month “July, 2012”

When your job is truly a pain in the a$$

Friday I went to see the Exorcist.  She’s a pretty, petite redhead and if you saw her at the grocery you’d think she looks like a very sweet, nice person.

She does Bowen Technique which consists of me lying face down in a calm, quiet room with Yanni playing softly in the background as she gently prods my back.  After few minutes, lulled by her gentle touch and calm demeanor, I relax.  At that moment, with her super human psychic abilities, she senses my vulnerability and crams her fingers up to the knuckles in my thigh, my quad, my back, my calves – whatever seems most likely at that moment to make me levitate. 

She’s checking me out.  She asks, “What did you do?”

“Ummm,” I think.  I bet this is a trick question.  It never seems to go well after this point.

“I ran?” I posit hesitantly.

“No, to your back.”

“Ummm,” I think.  I knew it was a trick question.  “Nothing?”

“The entire right side of your back is out and higher than your left”

You know, I’m starting to feel a bit paranoid about all this.  I’m concerned I could be the only person who repeatedly shows up at her clinic with some part of my body on crooked, falling off, up too high or down too low.  I feel it demonstrates some lack of responsibility on my part, as though at night when I get ready for bed I take off my body and throw it in the corner of the closet where it lies crooked and crumpled and the next morning I fail to take the time to starch and iron it properly.

Last week when I mentioned to hubs that I thought I had a muscle strain in my quad he pointed out that I should probably know, what with having that M.D. and all.   Apparently he was right because I didn’t have a quad strain after all.

If you run a few days a week and work out with a trainer, but then spend 8-10 hours of the day for several weeks during the busy time of the year for work, sitting on a chair in front of a desk, and you don’t practice Safe Posture, you will dork up your back.  I knew that.  I’ve been doing it for years.

However, another thing that can happen is that your hip flexors can get so tight that they radiate pain into your quad.  My back was all dorked up because it was trying vainly to pull everything back where it belonged, while nothing wanted to cooperate, and in the meantime my butt was trying to fall off again partly due to the fact I was sitting on it non-stop.  It seems my body has failed to understand the concept of teamwork.  Its motto:  All for None and None for All.

I’ve decide on none of the above.  I’m just going to blog about it.

Also I’m about fed up with all these positive, happy, do-gooders posting sh*t all over FB about being a better person and not letting the little things get to you and being positive and centered and mature.

Here’s my philosophy:

And also this:

And this:

Ok.  That’s not really a philosophy, just eye candy.   But, see?  I can post positive things.  Positively gorgeous.

With Yanni in the background doing musical things that sound tinklingly musical The Exorcist proceeded to exorcise those damn non-compliant muscles until they begged for mercy.  When she was done I was allowed to sit up on the side of the table.  Apparently dorked up muscles get pissed when forced to behave, plummeting blood pressure to middle earth.  After several minutes I stood.  As I rocked back and forth a bit I thought how it’s funny, most people do not realize how unstable the surface of the earth actually is.  Probably just a minor earthquake.

I stood there for a minute before I realized what that strange feeling was:  Nothing hurt.

I said to Brain, “hey – you’d better do an All-System check, here.  I can’t feel my butt trying to fall off.”

Brain was gone for a minute and then reported back that all of me was still there.

Wow.  This must have been how it felt to be a kid.  I don’t actually feel most of my body parts, they’re just all hanging out, cooperating.

Of course it didn’t last, the next morning I felt as though I’d been hit by a small truck, but it was a good hurt, the kind where you can stretch it out and feel things start to settle a bit.  I was not allowed to run until Sunday morning, and then only if I did not race.  I was good, I didn’t race, and although my legs felt tired I didn’t hurt.  I ran again Tuesday and my butt still wants to fall off; I’ll text E. and tell her.  It’s interesting, the body, how it works.  One part hurts which causes another part to pull the slack.  That part gets worn out and a third part is called in.  By the time you hurt enough to go to an Exorcist you’ve got Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon going on in your body.

Oh those bones, oh those bones,
oh those skeleton bones.
Oh those bones, oh those bones,
oh those skeleton bones.
Oh those bones, oh those bones,
oh those skeleton bones.
Oh mercy how they scare!

In which we learn why a 56 year old woman was at the grocery in compression shorts.

This morning I headed out and the first mile felt fine – other than like a death march after all the busy-ness of Sunday – but really, what’s new about that?  All of us feel that way by the middle of July, right?  Finished the warm up, headed out on the next mile and *ouch* my left quad hurt.  It hurt on the lift in every stride, rather like I had a tennis ball sized bruise that was being hit.  I slowed and finally walked.  I got my (cold) water bottle and rolled the quad, did some stretching – headed out – nope.  From the first stride, hurt.

I hadn’t felt anything pop, stretch, or pull, but there was a definite issue.  I didn’t want to get too bummed and negative, but I kinda was.  I’m just getting back into shape and running regularly and now this.  But I’ve made up my mind:  things happen; more things will happen the more you’ve had a chance to live, and you need to roll with it, Terrilee.  To paraphrase Demosthenes, I decided it was better to not fight, and not run, and live to run another day so I bagged it.  I texted a running buddy who said she thought muscle strain – rest, no running for two days, ice – you know the drill.  That was pretty much what I thought too, it feels like a strain.

I figured a good thing to do is provide the area some support.  I have a great pair of compression shorts that my Barbie doll used to wear and thought that could be a good thing.  Compression shorts.  Those should certainly help provide support.

Earlier I had been bummed not only because I didn’t get my run but because I’d made potato salad yesterday.  I was counting on burning a few extra calories to make room for a second helping of potato salad and cutting the run short by about 4/5’s meant about 4/5’s less potato salad (very sad face).

I soon realized, however, that the incredible struggle of getting the compression shorts on would certainly make up for some of that loss as I sat on the bed to put them on, stood and tried to pull them up.  Glued to my calves, I vainly attempted to grab any bit of the tightly compressed fabric with my fingers to give a tug.  Several nails broke and the fabric remained intact.  I painfully worked a fingertip between the fabric and my skin as it took on a blueish tinge.  Slowly and awkwardly I inched the fabric up.  Standing on one foot, my finger held prisoner between fabric and skin, I began to teeter – forward – backward – I attempted to stop the fall as I lurched about the room like a drunken Frankenstein and Chunk watched in fascinated horror from behind the curtains, one eye peeping out.  Finally getting most of the shorts above my knees I grabbed the waistband and waltzed about the room desperately trying to pull them further up by jumping up and down in the frankly ridiculous hope that jumping would somehow help.  Rather like trying to cram your size 10 foot into Cinderella’s slipper.

Finally, sweating and exhausted, the compression shorts were pretty much where they were supposed to be.  I laid down for a few minutes trying to catch my breath.  This was not an easy thing to do as my diaphragm was severely compromised by an aggressive waistband which, when first removed from the packaging, was 6″ in diameter.

At this point I realized I cannot actually bend to sit up because every time I do the waistband springs into action, rolling itself into a little tube around my middle and effectively cutting me in half, shoving the top part of my overindulging-in-potato-salad-excess UP and the bottom part DOWN.  I now look like a balloon figure at the circus, twisted tightly in the middle and sausages at each end.

Man, I really hope I don’t have to pee today.  It really sucks I did all that hydrating earlier this morning.

AHhhhhh.  DAMMIT.  I’ve got to go to the store.

“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooooooooo!” screams Brain.

“Um, yeah, Brain, sorry.  You’re the one who kept nagging me to hydrate.  Now we’re out of toilet paper.”

“FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF@##,” Brain screams.

“You know, Brain, I’ve noticed you have a tendancy to cuss when you don’t care to deal with an issue.”

“I f*&^’ing DO NOT!” exclaimed Brain.

I told Brain I was tired of arguing and we went to the store.

Every summer the kids who work in the produce department get younger.  It’s summer, it’s school vacation time and I guess the theory is they are old enough to drive and have a summer job and take girls out on dates or something, if that’s anything they even still do.  But these kids look like they’re about 12, or they’re using Nair on their faces or something.  Babyfaced peach skinned little children are walking around pushing carts full of guavas and stocking tomatoes.  Their parents should be arrested.  Aren’t there any child labor laws in effect any longer??

Brain and I scurry into the store hoping no one will see us.  You know how it goes.  You just mowed the lawn and washed the dog, you’re out of milk, you’ve got on a bikini top under a torn t-shirt and 18 year old running shorts with paint on them and a hole in the butt, you run to the corner store and your Priest is damn certain gong to be standing there buying a Coke.

We were moving fast, we were stealth, when suddenly one of those produce-stocking innocents looked up and saw me, squished in half, white flesh bulging, eyes bulging, gasping for air.  I think his (obviously unconcerned about his welfare) parents have probably been letting him watch far too much of “Walking Dead” as he seemed to mouth the word “Walkers” and fell in a dead faint.

I texted a quick picture to my blog before the cops got there in case it was the last thing I was able to do as a free woman and I needed some type of proof of my innocence.

The poor child was helped to a chair by co-workers.  Avoiding all eye contact and apparently wishing desperately for a baseball bat with which to bash me, he stammered and muttered that he did not want to press charges, that he just wanted me to Go. Away. and also that “I quit”.

They did let me buy the toilet paper but I noticed, as I left the store, a hastily scribbled sign noting “NO SHIRT NO SHOES NO SERVICE.  COMPRESSION SHORTS: SORRY STORE IS OUT OF BUSINESS”

Why 56 year old women should not wear compression shorts to the grocery store.

Bob-bob-bobbin’ along

Got up this morning at OMG o’clock so I could go run 10 miles with the peeps and maybe ride my bike after.

I love/hate Memphis.  It’s a cringing kind of love – “Oh, no.  He did not.”  “Oh, yes.  He did.”  But so heartrendingly sincere in all its misguided steps that you go along, trying to ignore the broken parts and loving what you can.

The Rendezvous.  Memphis in May. Elvis and Graceland. The River.  Paddleboats.  The lit “M” arch of the bridge.  The Peabody and the ducks.  Mid-town.  St. Jude.  The Greenline, the Farms, the Greenway – and so much more.  The politicians, the leadership, the lingering us-vs.-them-vs.-them-vs.-us racial issues that have to be periodically resurrected by some politician, business man or pastor who didn’t get what they wanted, not so much.

Having grown up in Arizona I feel a kinship with the desert that is soul deep.  Hot summer evenings when it’s still in the upper 90’s after the sun has gone down, sitting outside with friends, the air as soft as kitten breath on your skin, looking up at bright twinkling stars you can see though a sky not laden with a haze of humidity.

So when I get up for a run in July in Memphis and check with whom I still have a shaky relationship, but doesn’t seem to quit fit either, and it happily announces that it is currently 75 degrees and NINETY-NINE percent humidity all I can do is shake my head and add another bottle of Gatorade to the pile already in the truck.

By mile 7 I’d sweat so much that my feet were squishing in my shoes while my tired legs constantly tried to remind me that it was SUNDAY, for God’s sake, and should we not be home drinking coffee and looking at the crossword, EH??  Lisa O, my running buddy today, was feeling inexplicably chipper which was an excellent foil to my suffering.  After emailing with some of the group yesterday she’d gotten it into her head that she was doing 12 today and by dammit we were doing twelve.  Even when Bill, the 12 mile instigator, showed up late and left early (having recently broken his hand in a bike accident and still casted and pinned, he gets a bye on this one for sure).  Oh, no.  We are doing 12 miles.

“We’re about a half mile from the car and we’ll be at 11, do you think we should just call it?”

“No, we can pass the car, loop the lake and get that last mile.”

“Oh – look!  There’s the rest of the peeps waiting for us!  Probably we should not make them wait any longer!”

“No, they’re fine.”

“I bet we’ll be at 11.5 at the car, 11.5 is good.”

“Fine, if you want to stop go ahead.”


“But you’ll regret it later….”

ah, dammit.  And when we hit 11.80 and she surged, I was right there too.  Gonna finish this sucker off with a kick!  Then we pulled out the bikes and covered the length of the Greenway, 16.5 miles.  The last 3-4 miles I was the sweeper as Lisa, hubs and Catherine pulled strongly ahead.  I didn’t care.  Running on tired legs, biking on tired legs – day off tomorrow and they can learn to get stronger, it’s all good.

Despite the dead legs, however, it was a great run and I’m definitely glad we got the miles in.  I know we got the miles in because when I got home and stood next to the desk my Garmin started beeping excitedly.  My Garmin downloads automatically to the computer any time it’s nearby.  My Garmin, in fact, is so enthusiastic about downloading to my computer that any time it’s near my computer it downloads, then downloads, then downloads in a continuous loop of data transfer with its beloved, the Garmin ANT agent, until eventually it dies.  It’s a bit like Romeo and Juliet, only – and fortunately – after the Garmin has essentially sacrificed itself for love the computer does not do the same.  I have to be sure to remember not to leave it on my desk because resurrection takes about 5 hours and I don’t really care to realize, at 7am the next run day, that it’s dead and I will have to wait until noon for it to charge if I want to wear my gadget on the run.

Don’t suggest I run nekked.  Don’t wanna.  Can’t make me.  Love my gadget.  Too much joy.  I love to come home from a tough run, get cleaned up, sit at my desk all fresh and clean and dry with a cup of coffee or an icy Diet Dr. P.  I pull out my running journal.  I scroll the training screen on G. and with my favorite pencil I carefully write in the distance, time, pace, HR, who I ran with, splits – anything that seems important to me.  Then I look at my journal.  Sometimes I just flip the pages and watch them turn.  Half the pages’ ears are notched:  half a year of running.  Half a year of weeks and days and memories of friends, runs, good weather and bad, feeling great and hardly breathing, sighting deer or killdees or bluebirds.  All pieces of me, in there.

Today I think I may print a picture and put it in the journal too.  We were near 6 miles when Lisa and I stopped to look at the Wolf River, which is quite low right now due to the overall lack of rain lately, but, while still low, was running fairly strongly today since we did have rain the past couple days.  It was fun to watch the muddy, stirred up mocha-colored soup of river flow by.  Lisa took a pic while I stared myopically at an upended chunk of tree on the opposite shore.  Oddly, part of the chunk looked like a cat’s face, turned to look over its shoulder at us.

“Lisa, look at that,” I pointed, “what is it?”

At that moment it stood, stretched, leapt upon the log behind it and then loped into the trees.

‘IT’S A BOBCAT!” Lisa exclaimed, “We just saw a BOBCAT!  And no one is going to believe us!”

I don’t know why she thought no one would believe us.  I’m deeply hurt.  I think anyone who is the Queen of England should not be questioned.

We excitedly looked at the pic on her cell phone.  With the glare of the hazy clouds it was difficult to know if we would be able to see the bobcat later, but we could tell she got that part of the river in the frame.

Proof!  🙂  We saw a bobcat!

COOL, Huh?





And this one was so tame, I was able to PET IT!

Friday the 13th

It’s Friday the 13th.

Chunk slept in, and I got up at 4 this morning, on purpose.

Tomorrow when I don’t have to get up she will be jumping on me like a trampoline by 4am.

Approximately 7-9 out of every 100 people around the world are unfortunate enough to suffer from a condition called paraskevidekatriaphobia: the fear of Friday the 13th.

I couldn’t find my running shoes.  I found other running shoes, but they didn’t have my orthotic in them.  I finally found them – in the closet.

Who the hell puts their running shoes in the closet??

Now my closet stinks.

Personally, I do not suffer from a condition called paraskevidekatriaphobia: the fear of Friday the 13th.

 I was out of Powerade.

I stopped at the gas station to get some, but actually I didn’t stop, I just kept driving because the gas station – 25 feet off the exit of a highway – was CLOSED.

I got on the freeway to go to the track to run and it started raining.

Country Music star Taylor Swift actually considers 13 to be her lucky number.

 That’s OK, I don’t mind running in a little rain.

Then it started pouring.

Well, I’m going to get wet sweating anyway.

I would consider seeing Taylor Swift in concert to be a very unfortunate thing.  What’s the term for people who don’t like country music?

Then the lightning started.

OK, I’ll head to the Center.

Did you know that many tattoo parlors offer tattoos for $13 on Friday the 13th?  I don’t really know why.

 Dammit.  Don’t have my shuffle.

Now I’m going to have to spend an hour on the treadmill squinting at the closed captioning that I can’t actually see because I refuse to wear my trifocals and only have on bifocals.

Not out of vanity, but because I constantly trip on the stairs when wearing the trifocals, and can’t see the computer screen even tho that was the intention.

I paid full price for my little Runner Girl tattoo.  I like her.

Where’s my phone?  I could listen to tunes on it.

On the counter.  In the kitchen.  At home.

I park and go into the Center.

According to Legend, the British government sought to disprove the myths surrounding Friday the 13th, so they commissioned a ship called the H.M.S. Friday and embarked it on its first mission; on Friday the 13th…. and it was never seen again.  Probably the same place my phone, shoes and keys have all ended up at various times.

I leave and go back to my car.

I now have my keys and can get into the Center.

I forgot my towel.

Get off the treadmill and get a towel from the desk.

There are three Friday the 13ths in 2012.  Jan. 13, Apr. 13, and July 13.  Ironically, they are all exactly 13 weeks apart.  I’m sure this means something.


Read closed captioning about Joe Paterno for 57 of the 58 minutes I run because the ESPN CC is in CAPS and it’s the only TV I can see clearly.

Pretty.  Damn.  Tired. of.  Paterno.

It doesn’t actually scare everyone. In Italian popular culture, Friday the 17th—not the 13th—is considered a day of bad luck. Coincidentally, Italians generally consider 13 to be a lucky number.

Leave Center in pouring rain.

Stop at McD’s.

Nope, no stop at McD’s, there isn’t one around here.

Author Mark Twain was once the 13th guest at a dinner party.  Despite a friends warning not to go, saying, “It was bad luck,” he went anyway.  Twain later said  they only had enough food for 12.  Probably he wasn’t able to find a McDonald’s on his way home, either.

Work with Killer.

Entire body is sore.

Why do I feel so weak?

According to UK’s The Mirror, New York resident Daz Baxter chose to stay in bed on Friday the 13th in 1976 in order to avoid bad luck.  Unfortunately his apartment floor collapsed and he fell six stories to his death.  Guess the floor felt rather weak, too.

Killer asks, what did you have for breakfast?

Oh.  Yeah.  um, nothing.

NOTHING?  You woke up four hours ago, ran 5.5 miles and have worked out for an hour and you’ve had nothing to eat??

Yeah…um…McD’s, it went invisible.  I couldn’t find it.

According to Smithsonian Magazine “fear of the #13 costs American a billion dollars per year in absenteeism, train and plane cancellations,  and reduced commerce on the 13th of the month.”


My abs are sore, my quads are sore, my calves are sore and my ego is sore.

I am currently 4th in my age group in the Road Race Series, with some pretty speedy ladies ahead of me.  The past three years I’ve done the series I placed:  3rd Grandmaster, then 1st in my age group, then 3rd in age group last year.  The truth is I got lucky, you can see by the progression I was sliding.  Now there are a couple newbies in the series who’ve earned their stripes.  Any 59-year-old that can do a 7:53 pace on a hot and humid 5k, I say, has earned the spot and it’s my job to get better, not wish her away.

In the meantime my butt is trying to fall off again.  Probably because I almost ran it off at the 5K, the wheels just about fell off the bus and my average HR was 3 beats below my max HR, which I pretty much count as running at 100% for 26 minutes and 22 seconds.  I’ve texted the Exorcist, hopefully she can see me soon.  I’m looking forward to that.  I had my first two children in the midst of the all natural craze with nothing during labor and delivery except pitocin which – I can tell you – just makes it worse instead of better.  If you have “the laziest uterus I’ve ever seen” per the Doc you’re going to have to do something to get that kid out of its lazy residence, if your butt is trying to fall off you’re going to have to go see the Exorcist to have her put it back on – you might as well start practicing your transition breathing again.

Which, by the way, does jacksh*t to alleviate pain.  One night after Lamaze class (this was with the twins.  I took the class for form but fool me once, fool me twice, third time I’m taking the epidural) hubs asked me about the breathing thing.

“So does that breathing make it not hurt?” he asked, sincerely interested and trying to figure out how this all falls into place.

“Go slam your Buddy in the door over there.  Breathe in–breathe out–slow and easy now.  Does that help?”

“Oh.  Never mind.”

I have some friends who are “runners” which is code speak for “Crazy People” but sounds nicer when you’re out in public.  More PC.  One of my runner friends does triathlons, which is runner code speak for “Crazier than ME” and tends to make runners feel both superior, because obviously they are less crazy than the tri-er, and inferior because they’re struggling to do one event and the tri-er is accomplishing three.  Three is more than one, even “runners” know that because they can count on their toes and fingers and they know that when they lose three toenails that’s worse than losing one.

Silly me, I made FB friends with them, which means they have easy access to inboxing me; all three of us have awesome jobs which allow us to sit at a desk, alone, for hours at a time with no one to talk to and which occasionally bore us to tears, we inbox to alleviate boredom.

*BOINK* inbox message:  BEER

 – YES!  BEER!


 – Cheeseburger!

 – Cheeseburger and Fries!



 – What are you having for lunch?

 – Salad.  Turkey & low-fat cheese roll up on whole wheat tortilla.  Gatorade. 

 – I have 24 almonds and some raisins for later, too!

See?  Idiots.


I’m swimming tomorrow says my friend, whom I shall give the alias “Becky” to shield her from the Child Protective Services who will certainly remove her child if they find out she runs, bikes and swims – all in the same day – and thinks that’s fun.  Perhaps they would have a point.

Good on you  I say

What time?  I’ll meet you replies “Heather” to whom I also have to give an alias because now she’s exhibiting some serious crazy too.

Terri, you need to come

 — no.

– Come on!  It’s great cross training (translation:  “more crazy shit”)

— no

 – it will make you run better

 — no

 – it’s a great aerobic workout with no impact 

 — no

 – it will help you get some exercise while your butt is falling off

 — no.  I want my butt to fall off. 

 – What.  Are you …. chicken?

 — no.  dammit.

 – You always cuss when you don’t want to discuss things rationally

 — I F*&$’ing DO NOT

 – um…yes ^^^ you do

 — @#$$.  I hate you both

 — and I don’t have any goggles

 — and I don’t have one of those swimming hair condom things either.

 – they sell goggles at the Rec Center

 — WHAT THE HELL?  Do they have a license to sell sh*t???

 – I have a swim cap you can use

 — dammit.  fine.

 — and I hate you both

That evening I tell hubs I’m going swimming with “Becky” and “Heather”.  After he recovers from the fainting spell he offers me his extra swim goggles.  Now I hate him, too.  I hate swimming, I hate “Becky” I hate “Heather” and I hate goggles.

Tuesday morning I trudge into the swim area.  B & H smile but it was really a smirk, I think, and they were just disguising it.  I hop in the pool and attempt to put the hair condom on.  It springs off the top of my head, rolls up into a tube the size of a pencil and sticks to itself.

“See?” I say, “it’s a sign from God.  I’m not supposed to swim.”

B unwraps the damn thing and I get it on my head after losing several large chunks of hair to its rubbery grip.  The goggles are glued to my face and seem to be sucking all the air out of my eyeballs.  H & B set off across the pool so I push off and flail along behind gasping for air and sucking in enough water that I will not need to hydrate for several days.  Hugging the other end of the pool I promise God if I am able to swim back to the shallow end I will never cuss again.

Shit.  I made it.  Dammit.  I just cussed.  Sorry, God, please don’t smote me.   God’s pretty cool, by the way.  Never once has He ever smote me, and if I were God I’d be smoting the hoohah out of me.

I will insert here that I am an RRCA certified running coach.  I took an intense three-day course and a killer test and passed.  I learned all about the physiology of running, the progression of fitness levels, starting slow and easy and gradually increasing distance and incorporating speed work.  I had just spent three hours the evening before telling all the ladies I ran beside in the Beginning Runners group that they need to just run for one minute.  Then we’ll walk two.  You don’t have to go far.  Just go to that next light pole.  Take it easy, don’t rush it.

Tuesday morning I get up, jump in the pool and think I’m supposed to swim back and forth repeatedly the minute I touch water.  Do as I say, not as I do.

B says, “Terri, watch me.”  She pushes off, shows me form, how to practice gliding, how to incorporate a stroke.  I push off and make it to the first set of steps and return.

“There, that’s good.  Now just do that for a few minutes.” and she heads for the deep end.

I obediently push off and glide.  I made it past the steps!  YAY ME!

I push and glide, progress to pushing, gliding, stroking; progress to pushing, gliding, stroking, breathing.  By the end of the session I was making it 2/3 of the way across the pool before resting and turning back.

“I don’t hate swimming!” I announce to B & H.

They smile.

That night I announce to hubs, “I DON’T HATE SWIMMING!”  He smiles a little.  He knows how I flow.  Always fighting it on the front end and learning the hard way.

“Hey, God – thanks for hubs.  And for H &B.” I say.  “Maybe by the time I’m 60 I’ll be fast.  And not hard-headed.”

Ok, one out of two would be good.  I think I’d rather be fast.

Happy Fourth of July!!

This morning I worked out with Killer and then did three (very) slow miles in the heat, continuing my efforts to acclimate to heat.  At least I finally found my shuffle so I could listen to some tunes while I gasped for air.  Another notch in the got ‘er done column!

We celebrated the fourth last Saturday, had friends and family over and enjoyed tooling around the lake before the fireworks and then parking the pontoon near the display for a great view.  The neighborhood association puts on a very good show and the kids loved it.  I’m not sure what you call your husband’s cousin’s child (umptythird twice removed?) – at four years of age she was the highlight for the adults as she screamed after every explosion that “THIS IS THE BEST NIGHT OF MY LIFE!!”  This kind of attitude could someday ruin some poor guy’s honeymoon but I’m not going there.  B’ster, on the other hand, being 2-1/2 years old, was very excited right up the first BOOMPOW when he immediately glued himself to his mother and attempted to return to the womb.  Hands over his ears he stated quietly, “I don’t like fireworks.”  Obviously he got nothing of his mother’s or his Moggie’s blood, thank you Little Baby Jesus in the straw, and instead, happily, seems to be exactly like his patient, quiet, and understated father and Poppa.  My daughter and I are fully capable of being patient, quiet and understated any time we are under full anesthesia, so I do think we need some credit, however small it may be.

Murph and Chunk had a great time.  Chunk was hounded mercilessly by three little girls and the B’ster which serves her completely right since she has been very full of herself lately, shoving all my things off my desk, walking repeatedly, slowly and regally across my keyboard causing some poor member’s name to be transposed to John Poihylkuyoiuaah – and won’t his momma be surprised that he is Hawaiian when she could have sworn he was born at the Memorial Hospital in Menomonie, WI to her (of Irish decent) and the hubs, Mr. Smith, whose grandparents were from the upper Cotswolds?

Murphmeister – abused as a pup, apparently – has an issue with men.  He mostly hates them for the first five minutes he meets them, then after repeatedly barking at the decibel level of a sonic boom and occasionally doing a fake rush at the now terrified male he decides he loves them and slavishly follows them about.  A while ago hubs thought it would be a good idea to quietly slip the petrified male visitor a ‘cookie’ (as they are called in our house) in order to make the dog like the guy.  Now Murphy associates new males with barking wildly and cookies so he barks more, and longer, in an attempt for more cookies.  His thought process is, apparently, “I barked until the guy peed himself, got a cookie.  How far can I take this?”  He was in heaven, barking and eating cookies.  Fourth of July is now his favorite holiday.  Fireworks?  Not a problem.  By that point he was in a stuffed tummy stupor asleep on my bed and if a drunk guy had tried to climb in the window…useless.  As he was before when the drunk guy tried to climb in the window.

Today it’s a quiet one.  Traitor is probably celebrating his sorry a$$ off in Brooklyn, Other Traitor is probably working HAHAHAHA because they don’t celebrate the 4th of July in Brazil (and I don’t care to hear either of you mention Carnival  since I’ve already told him any beautiful Brazilian lady he might fall in love with is moving to America and their mom can come visit here.)

There’s some fireworks.  Won’t that look nice walking down the aisle at St. Mary’s?

Google images has ruined many lives.  Hold on a minute, I think I’m hyperventilating.

It took me a while to book tickets to Brazil for 12 months.  I had to find an apartment too, and it was hard to get one that close, but I managed to get next door to him.  Bet that will be a happy surprise when he finds out his momma is his neighbor!  Makes me smile just to think of his joy.

Murphy and Chunkster enjoy my blog.  They read it all the time, apparently.  That surprised me until I remembered how well Chunk can work the keyboard.  I guess she’s able to pull up my posts.  Since they are so excited about the fourth of July and all the fun I thought I should draw a picture of the excitement around our house today.  I know I’ve been remiss in making pictures lately so I took extra time with this one, I think it captures quite truthfully the extent of their enthusiasm and I hope you enjoy it.

Happy 4th of July!!  Many (very sincere) thanks to all those who risk their own lives so I can sit at this desk and write a bunch of stuff that has no redeeming value.

Oh, my heavy soul

DURHAM — For at least 100 years the more oddball branches of science have struggled to answer this metaphysical head-scratcher:  How much does the human soul weigh?

In 1907, a Massachusetts doctor named Duncan MacDougall settled on the figure of 21 grams – the average weight loss experienced by six terminal tuberculosis patients he strapped to a scale at the moment of death.

A dozen years ago, an Oregon rancher named Lew Hollander tried to measure the souls of one ram, seven ewes, three lambs and a goat. His findings:  The animals actually gained weight as they shook off this mortal coil – anywhere from 18 to 780 grams.

Now, this summer, the Rhine Research Center in Durham will host the latest experiment aimed at nailing down the intangible essence of mankind.

The method: 1.) Stand on a scale. 2.) Have an out-of-body experience. 3.) Record weight.

Read more here


When I said I was dying to lose some weight to get into that new dress, I did not mean it literally.

Usually when I stand on a scale I have a “wish I were out of my body” experience.  No matter what it says, I still get irritated.  Or, maybe if it loudly announced YOU ARE FREEKING HOT.  YOU ARE HOTTER THAN SANDRA BULLOCK, then maybe I wouldn’t hate it.  But it would be close.  Particularly if I were a terminal tuberculosis patient and were strapped to it.  Plus I’d probably gain the damn 18 to 780 grams, although the idea is by then I would no longer care.

How many out-of-body experiences have you two had?  I had one once.  I got the flu.  My temp was 104.  They kept asking me my name but I wasn’t sure I had it right.  Terri?  Is it Terri?  Am I on Jeopardy?

Or that might be more like an out-of-mind experience.

You put your brain right in,
You put your brain right out,
You put your brain right in,
And you shake it all about.

You do the hokey pokey
and you turn yourself around
That what it’s all about.

I tend to have out-of-mind experiences, but when my brain leaves it never takes me with it.  Later it wanders back, dazed and confused, apparently unaware, itself, where it journeyed.  I think it’s been on the merry-go-round one too many turns.

We had a little disagreement last Friday.

Brain said, “That was kinda tough.  Are you sure we should have done that?”

I said to Brain, “Why?  Do you not trust me?” with a little whiny accent on the trust; now I’ve turned it into a matter of trust, expediently getting the focus off of me.

“Wellllll….sure…,” Brain replied, hesitantly.  (see how that worked?  Now Brain is questioning itself instead of focusing on me.  Keep this technique in mind next time you need to divert attention.)

You know, you have one little event and everyone immediately assumes that’s how things are going to roll from now on.  Seriously, who would have thought, when they signed up for the Bartlett 50K a few years ago in May that it was going to hit 103 degrees and 1,437% humidity in Memphis that August race day?  Memphis doesn’t see 100’s.  Well, except that day, and this week.  100bajillion% humidity, of course, but not 100+ degrees.  I still insist that was not a seizure I had on the bathroom floor.   I knew what was going on and could talk.  I just couldn’t stop my entire body from jerking.  My head kept hitting the bathroom door and I think that bothered the twins a bit, all that irregular banging which they could hear from upstairs, so I felt bad about that, not that it appeared I could do much to make it end.   And why did hubs keep looking at his watch?  Anyway, everything was fine.  I finally stopped jerking – hey, I wanted to stop as much as they wanted me to – got into the ice bath, cooled off, ate something, took a nap and I was good to go.

Since then Hubs has renamed the Bartlett Ultra:  The Stupid Run.  He thinks the race shirt logo should be “I’m With Stupid” with an arrow pointing up.

Unfortunately, following that I have developed a bit of an intolerance to heat, which apparently can happen after an ‘issue’.  I try to be tolerant of most stuff, except raging idiots, but heat gets to me.  I’ve been reading a lot about heat acclimation and the physiological changes your body undergoes to adapt.  Over the period of 7-10 days your body creates more blood plasma and blood volume increases, allowing your body to devote more blood flow to the extremities.  Initially while running in heat your body diverts more blood to the core to cool your vital organs, but as you continue to be exposed to heat the increased blood plasma and blood volume allows blood flow to the skin and extremities also.  The more efficiently your body can cool, the lower your heart rate and the easier it is to function.  At least that’s my synopsis of my readings.

Also unfortunately, the only way to be exposed to heat in order to start this process is to go outside in the heat.  Pretty much daily.  Because third unfortunately is this process reverses itself nearly as quickly, and isn’t that just the way it always goes.

Friday I worked with Killer at 7, got home, putzed, and started out for my run at 9am.  Took me 1:19 and change to do 7 miles.  I ran through two sprinklers, drank my 16 ounce bottle dry, stopped at the fountain in the park at mile 5, filled the bottle, drank that, poured three bottles of water over me, drank some more, refilled it and poured that over me during the final two miles.  I ran slow, I walked, I hydrated, I did fine.  But Brain didn’t seem to want to go along for the ride, and that’s when the argument started.

“It’s hoooooooottttttt,” whined Brain.

“I don’t like this,” Brain complained.

“We should stop now,” cajoled Brain.

I patiently explained to Brain that if we did stop now, we would have to walk 2.5 miles back to the house.

“Oh.  Never mind, let’s run,” Brain decided, only to rethink it all a few minutes later, “we could walk 2.5 miles, we could.”

“Look, Brain,” I said, feeling slightly irritated at its constant negativity, “I know we could walk 2 miles.  But we could run it and be home sooner.”

“AH.  Never Mind.”

“See?  I know what I’m doing here.  Look:  Water Bottle.”  I held up the full water bottle for Brain to see.

“I want some,” Brain said.  Now Brain is just being contrary.


“I want more.”

“No, wait.  Wait until four more light posts.”

“onetwothreefour,” Brain counted quickly.

“Dammit.  Stop.”

“You always cuss when you don’t want to discuss things rationally,” accused Brain.

“I &*^&’ing DO NOT!” I said, apparently a bit too loudly since the guy watering his yard looked up startled and kind of backed up toward the house.

“Now look what you did!  That man thinks I’m crazy now!”

Brain sighed.  “Um…you are crazy.”


“Let’s walk the last half mile,” I sighed.

Brain nodded.

No wonder I’d like an out-of-body experience.  Brain is making me nuts.

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