Sunday, August 22, 2010

Why Stop at Twenty??? Or Twenty-Two?? Or ...

With the rain coming on and off this morning [varying in intensity between sprinkles and downpours], and D'Kid down at her BFFs house for the afternoon, I thought I might be able to get a nice drizzly 20-miler in today.

It was sufficiently cloudy when I left the house [Team Tania jersey in FULL glory] that I didn’t expect it to be long before I was soaking. Yeah well, my weather-reading skills aren’t what they used to be. Although the air was thick & humid, it was still too warm for it to shift over to precipitation. What was worse, at about the 8-mile mark, the sun actually came out, warming the roads and what puddles & dampness were left from earlier in the day. The upside was that the woods were spectacularly lush this afternoon.

It had been a while since I rode this particular route; it’s NOT one of D’Wife’s favorites and there is a considerable bit of climbing [“climbing” being a relative term, down here in Farm Country]. So it was understandable that I didn’t turn where I should have gone left and added a nice 2-mile loop to my journey. When I re-found myself at the intersection where I’d made this mistake [by SHEER Dumb Luck, I must add] … wouldn’t you know, I almost made the same turn AGAIN???

This is where the oddities of my own “special” Zen-Core Dork Brain come in.

“Okay, looks like your 20-miler is gonna come to 22 … but that’s kind of a funky number; it won’t look good on your log … let’s go for 24”

I reached the 24-mile mark about ½-mile out from home.

“Might as well make 25!!!”

I pedaled around an adjacent development.

“You know,” my Zen-Core voice told me “Using 1.5 points per mile, your VRAA score for the ride would be37.5. Why not go to 26 and make it an even 39? Plus, you don’t want to go LESS than 2 hours do you?”

I rolled into the driveway at 4:15 on the dot … EXACTLY 2 hours after I’d left.

I did 100 push-ups to bump my VRAA points to 40 on the day.

It rained at about 5:30; a massive downpour that would have probably taken me off my wheels had it come by while I was on the road … Fortunately, I was already into a pint of RiverHorse Hop Hazard and could enjoy the cool grey storminess outside from the safety of my kitchen.

[My buddy Satch added "You could have down another 0.2 and said you rode a marathon" ... If I'd thought of it, I probably WOULD have]

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fifteen Books

From Facebook

The rules: Don't take too long to think about it. Fifteen books you've read that will always stick with you. List the first fifteen you can recall in no more than fifteen minutes.

1. Moby Dick – Herman Melville
2. Count of Monte Cristo – Alexander Dumas
3. War of the Worlds – HG Wells
4. Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe
5. Catch-22 – Robert Heller
6. Cat's Cradle – Kurt Vonnegut
7. Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas – Hunter S Thompson
8. The Iliad - Homer
9. The Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway
10. Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
11. Dracula – Bram Stoker
12. The Razor's Edge – Somerset Maugham
13. Stuart Little – EB White
14. The Story of Ferdinand – Munro Leaf
15. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe – Douglas Adams

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Along Came a Spider

As if the heat & humidity we’ve been suffering with aren't bad enough, I stepped off the porch yesterday morning and got a face-full of just-begun spider web ... NO amount of bug spray is gonna fix THAT!!!


I did my best to brush the sticky silk off my nose & mouth, and ears even, but the thought that perhaps I had a little hitchhiker in my hair kinda took me off my game, running the 4 mile loop in about 37 minutes [I know, you'd think the arachnophobically-induced adrenalin-rush would make me go a little faster, right??? Nope!!!]

Of course, there were no sprinklers running that I might rinse her off and cool down just a bit ... when I got in the post-run shower [fully dressed in my running gear, like I usually do when it’s nearly 80° with 80% humidity and I’m Sweating like Nixon and it’s not even 7AM yet] I didn't see any crawly friend in the tub, so all that worrying was for nothing.

I can't tell you how many times I've come back from early morning trail runs/rides wearing a spider-silk mask/hairnet. The "nice" thing is pulling a "leaf" out of your hair in the shower and watching it unfold and crawl away. Funny, my reaction was usually, "Oh, Hi there!!!"

While one of my friends once commented that she’d “try to save the little dude or dudette from drowning,” I would not get carried away, here ... I mean I would gladly assist her to an open window if that's where she's headed [most adult spiders are girls, the dudes don't make it long] but I'm not going to "Extraordinary Measures" if she's going down the drain, either.

By bedtime, Little Miss Creepy Crawlie had a new construction up ... AWAY from the porch steps, but firmly fixed to the railing. She's a smart girl; any moth-like buggies flying toward the porch light would prolly end up as dinner ... Spidery Strategery!!!

I'm so glad she wasn't home when I walked thru her house; she's about 2' long a 3/4" wide all cuddled up in the center of her silvery net [6cm x 2cm for those metrically inclined]

My grandmom used to tell me that if you kill a spider, it will bring rain. As much as we need it, I wouldn’t want to CRUNCH this little girl.

As luck would have it, we DID get a shower last night at about 2:30AM; but with the nightmare our little web-weaver induced in me, I bailed on my run this morning to make up for the sleep I missed.

When I got up to start my day, I took a peek to see if she'd survived the rainstorm.

The web was there, but she was not home.

Again, all that worrying was for nothing.