Friday, October 31, 2008

Today's Workouts

15 mile run at lunch. That's 46 miles for the last 2 days, 31 yesterday and 15 today. Everything from my rear down to my toe-nails is sore.

Things a Guy Shouldn't Say to Another Guy

I'd just finished running at a high school track. The Donk stopped by to visit.

Donk: "I didn't recognize you with hair on your legs"


    Another installment of occasional updates on how we are doing out there

  • Starbucks is no longer providing insulators on their cups unless explicitly asked

  • Japanese stocks have lost 50% of their value...bringing the index down to the 8,000 range, the lowest it’s been since 1982!

  • GM is now trading in the $5 range – a price it last saw 60 years ago

  • The California pension system has lost $37 billion over the last 12 months

  • In September, 159,000 layoffs were recorded

  • Whirlpool just announced 5,000 job cuts.

  • American Express, hammered by the credit crisis, says it will slash 7,000 jobs as part of a drastic cost-cutting initiative

Only one of these is false

Answer - the CA pension system has lost $67 billion

Stuff Catholics Like

All Hallows Eve and All Saint’s Day

Instead of going on about how I'm dressing as Sarah Palin this year (hey I've got nice shoes and legs too)or how Sam is dressing up as Angeline Joline (I know Sam is a lot better looking than that - what can I say she wants twins too).

Go here for some thoughts and ideas about these two great feast days

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Free Grub on Halloween and Voting Day


Free Burrito at Chipotle

Voting Day:

Free Donut at Krispy Kreme

Free Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream from 5:00 – 8:00 pm

Today's Workouts

31 mile really long run today. All I have to say is this - Ouch!

This was a tough run. It took around 4:40 to complete. Last 7 miles or so were hard.
This is the longest I have ever run.


Another installment of occasional updates on how we are doing out there.

  • The latest report says unemployment in Rhode Island has topped 9% – the highest rate in the nation.

  • This month alone, stocks worldwide lost $10 trillion. The world stock index is down 48% so far for the year.

  • A new government study reccomends using Crystal Meth as a treatment for Alzheimer's

  • the Treasury Gross National Debt is now $10.326 trillion - up by a staggering $1.271 trillion from the $9.055 trillion in national debt only 12 months ago

  • The National Automobile Dealers Association estimates 700 new-car dealerships will close this year, up from 430 last year, and taking with them an estimated 37,100 jobs

  • PETA sent a letter to Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino asking him to stop eating Spam

  • Congress is considering a third “stimulus package” of the year

  • A musician is reportedly suing Jon Bon Jovi for $400 billion for allegedly stealing the lyrics to a song about the Red Sox.

Only one of the above is made up

answer - meth isn't really being used to treat Alzheimer's - but it probably couldn't hurt

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Today's Workouts

5.5 very windy miles running at lunch time. I know the calendar says it's October but it sure seems like March out there.

It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown

First aired in 1966 - two years after I was born. Did you catch it on ABC last night?

Besides being based on a cool premise, a pumpkin that brings toys - I mean we all want more toys, it includes tons of other classic characters and bits.

  • Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie right when he's about to kick it
  • Pig Pen and his swirl of just
  • Linus and his security blanket
  • Sally threatening to sue Linus cause she missed trick or treating
  • Charlie Brown getting a rock at every house
  • and of course Snoopy wearing his WWI flying ace gear - climbing aboard his Sopwith Camel to do battle with the Red Baron

Plus there was a bonus Charlie Brown show - You're not Elected Charlie Brown
I'm thinking Charlie Brown would make a better president than the current choices - I wonder if you can vote for him, with Joe Cool as his running mate.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Today's Workouts

10 mile run with 12 x 1/4 mile hill repeats in the middle.

Hippie Lettuce is Better than Iceberg Lettuce least on tacos out in Colorado.

LAKEWOOD, Colo. (AP) - A Colorado couple found an unusual topping on their order of tacos: a small bag of marijuana.

They discovered the drugs with their order from a Del Taco restaurant and called police, said Lakewood police spokesman Steve Davis.

Twenty-six-year-old Dennis Klermund, who police say waited on the husband when he picked up food Oct. 16, faces charges of possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

Klermund no longer works at the restaurant, said manager Ulises Montero. A message left for Klermund was not returned.

I don't know why he got fired. It sounds like a good business plan to me - give people the munchies so they will buy more tacos. Kinda like when Coca-Cola actually used to have coke in it.

You'd have to drug me to get me to eat at a Taco Bell type of place. That stuff is low-grade dog food. How my kids can eat at Taco Bell is beyond me, and I'll eat pretty much anything, anywhere, anytime.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Today's Workouts

5.5 miles an my lunch break.

It's Hard to be Humble

We have a family tradition where I take each child out by themselves for their birthdays. I take them out to breakfast or lunch and spend a little bit of time with them alone. Mary's 5th birthday was last month and we hadn't gotten it done yet but we finally found the time a few days ago. We went out to a burger joint and stuffed ourselves with cheeseburgers and fries. Mary and I had a great time but maybe, just maybe the special attention went to her head.

After we got home from lunch, at random times, around her older brothers and sisters, Mary would say things like "oh if you are wondering I'm not hungry" or "I'm not hungry I'm stuffed with fries and cheeseburgers". Or later in the day - "did i mention I went to lunch with dad?"

She's got the cuteness down, now to work on the humility.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Today's Workouts

7 mile evening run.

Silly Sunday

The 80’s through music in 10 minutes

The good the bad and the ugly. For all of you around my age who survived the 80’s.
And I don’t want to hear how hot Rick Springfield was. And yeah Boy George scares me too. Eddie Murphy should stick to comedy. I liked Van Halen better with David Lee than Sammy. Mesiah complex or not, Bono can sing. Slash’s top hat is awesome. How much hairspray was used in making video’s in the 80’s?
Dark Secret – I took Sam to see Wham in concert and I lusted after the dude in A-Ha’s hair.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Touchy Touchy

Shame on McCain and Palin for using an old code word for black

By Lewis Diuguid, Kansas City Star Editorial Page columnist

The "socialist" label that Sen. John McCain and his GOP presidential running mate Sarah Palin are trying to attach to Sen. Barack Obama actually has long and very ugly historical roots.

J. Edgar Hoover, director of the FBI from 1924 to 1972, used the term liberally to describe African Americans who spent their lives fighting for equality.

Those freedom fighters included the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who led the Civil Rights Movement; W.E.B. Du Bois, who in 1909 helped found the NAACP which is still the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization; Paul Robeson, a famous singer, actor and political activist who in the 1930s became involved in national and international movements for better labor relations, peace and racial justice; and A. Philip Randolph, who founded and was the longtime head of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters and a leading advocate for civil rights for African Americans.

McCain and Palin have simply reached back in history to use an old code word for black. It set whites apart from those deemed unAmerican and those who could not be trusted during the communism scare.

Shame on McCain and Palin.

This would be a great comedy piece if this nit-wit wasn't trying to be serious. Maybe he could turn it into a skit for Tina Fey to do on SNL.

Calling Obama a socialist (or commie or Marxist) is not racist, it's the truth. And by the way Lewis, MLK Jr was a Marxist.

Not that McCain and Palin seem like shining examples of free enterprise. I've yet to see them not support a government theft, I mean bailout, program.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Today's Workouts

14 miles running on some sore legs but they did loosen up some after about 4 miles. 100 miles total in the last 7 days.

Stuff Catholics Like

Long Hair - Ok so this doesn't just apply to Catholics, so sue me.

#12 May be Delayed Longer Than Expected

AKA - Sam cut her hair again.

No she didn't really shave it off ala Brittany Spears. But it's around shoulder length now. It's gotten progressively shorter over the years. So a 'Brittany' hair-do in the near future isn't that far-fetched. 5 years ago, when she really loved me, it was down to her waist. Sure it might have hung in the toilet when she sat down and yes on occasion it would get caught in the car door on exiting (its not like anyone ever drove away when it was stuck in the door). All those things are a small price to pay for love.

The first time she really whacked it off she made me do it! First she tricked me (not hard to do) into saying yes to a haircut. She said she wanted to donate to 'locks for love' so some little girl with cancer could have a wig to wear while going through treatments. Now how am I supposed to say no to that? Even I'm not that cold-hearted. Then to save money she had me cut it off. Sam has nice long straight hair so she had me cut off 24 inches...2 feet! That is a whole lot of hair. I imagine some girl has a beauitful wig now becuase of it...ok so that was worth it.

I know I know, what is it with us guys and long hair on our women? Why do we like it so? Is it a leftover gene from our caveman days when we used to drag women around by their hair? Is it because we love to get our hands all tangled up in it and smell it? Or maybe it's because the norm in society is for men to have short hair and we have Hair-Envy?

Don't get me wrong, she's still stunningly beautiful. And hopefully there will be a 12 soon, sure can't hurt to try.

Of course I'm not saying she has to have it down to the ground. It is possible to have hair that is too long. Unless you are locked in a castle tower of course. Then anything goes.


Given all that is going on this seemed appropriate

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Today's Workouts

28 miles early this morning. Started this run at 4:30 - Blech - on the plus side I saw no cars for the first 3 miles. I was not feeling the love on this run. Felt like dirt from about mile 15 to mile 27, got a second wind on the last mile or maybe I could just smell home. Ran the 10 middle miles with my Main Man Brayn. Um Rob I thought The Donk was your Main Man and running buddy? Well I haven't run with him and his hooves of gold for weeks now. Last I heard he had a great new job in working for UPS in their new Iraqi division.

#11 Again!!!!

Drats! Once again I just missed the top ten.

LOS ANGELES - Barack Obama was voted the most influential man of 2008 in an online poll released on Tuesday that asked men to decide who most impacted the way they behave, buy and think.

The Democratic presidential candidate was ranked No.1 by readers on the lifestyle Web site, beating Apple chief executive Steve Jobs and Olympic swimming champion Michael Phelps, who landed in the No. 2 and No. 3 spots, respectively.

Republican presidential candidate John McCain was ranked No. 10 on the list, which was compiled on the basis of 200,000 votes from readers of the Web site whose average age is 27-28 years-old.

The Top 10 on the Most Influential Men list:

1) Barack Obama (LMAO)
2) Steve Jobs (Ipods and Mac Books are nice, but #2? seriously?)
3) Michael Phelps (incredible swimmer but influential? I mean at anything other than pimping products.)
4) Robert Downey, Jr. (I can see this one, the IronMan suit was totally wicked)
5) Stephen Colbert (never heard of him - too lazy to google him)
6) Gordon Ramsay (never heard of him - too lazy to google him)
7) Christian Bale (as himself or as Batman or as John Connor in Terminator 4 that's coming out next May? anyway is cool)
8) Rob Kay (never heard of him - too lazy to google him)
9) Cristiano Ronaldo (my soccer playing kids will be pleased)
10) John McCain (I'm surprised 27-28 year-olds know who he is)

Told You the Sign of the Peace was a Commie Plot

The Sign of Peace ‘Jamboree’

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

'Dine and Dash' Caused by the Munchies

At least that's what I'm guessing. Sometimes you are just really hungry and got to eat, money or no money.

Waitress: Ready to order Hon?

Miss Teen Louisiana: I'll have some Moose Track ice cream, and a whole pizza just for me, and some chips, and a soda, and some chocolate...maybe some Chinese food, gummy worms, lasagna, rice, ramen noodles - lots of ramen noodles, fried chicken and a cheese-hamburger with the works...oh yeah, I almost forgot I wanted some fries with that...gravy for the fries please

Miss Teen Louisiana arrested, loses crown

BOSSIER CITY, La. (AP) — Miss Teen Louisiana lost her crown 11 days early after being arrested on charges of leaving a restaurant without paying and carrying marijuana.

The manager had found a pocketbook at the table, and police found Evans' driver's license and about 2 grams of suspected marijuana in it, Natale said.

And yes she is blond.

Today's Workouts

5.5 mile run at lunch

Where's the Beef?

Well it's right here!

CLEARFIELD, Pa. - It took Brad Sciullo 4 hours and 39 minutes to finish a marathon. A meat marathon, that is.

The 5-foot-11, 180-pound western Pennsylvania chef is the first person to eat a monstrosity called the Beer Barrel Belly Bruiser: a 15-pound burger with toppings and a bun that brought the total weight to 20.2 pounds. The mountain of beef is the product of Denny’s Beer Barrel Pub, about 100 miles northeast of Pittsburgh in Clearfield.

The burger included a bun, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, onions, mild banana peppers and a cup each of mayonnaise, ketchup, mustard and relish, pub owner Dennis Liegey said.

For completing the challenge in the under-five-hour time limit, Sciullo won $400, three T-shirts, a certificate “and a burger hangover, as I call it,” Liegey said.

A meat marathon?! Why didn't I think of that? Sounds like a lot more fun than the running kind of marathon I did a few weeks ago. Instead of having sore legs for a week, I'd have a sore stomach and rear-end. I wonder if it comes with some laxatives on the side - that thing looks like it could seriously stop up the old plumbing (I guess you could always call Joe the Plumber).

Doesn't say if dude went to the bathroom a lot during the 4+ hours. I'm guessing binge n' purge was against the rules. So no Super Models need apply.

Man that is a really cool looking burger. I think I need to take the family there for dinner. One of those should just about do us. I checked out Mapquest and it's only around 225 miles away. Hey Hunny, you up for a road trip?

Here is the website for Denny's Beer Barrel Pub. They have a whole assortment of different burgers. 2 pound, 3 pound, the 15 pound one mentioned above ($49.95), a 50 pounder ($179.95) and a 100 POUND PLUS sucker that goes for $379.95 - No I don't think my family could eat that one.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Coffee and chocolate are the key to long life

Chocolate, coffee and tea are among the key foods and drinks needed to live a long and healthy life, according to a leading nutritional scientist.

Speaking at his inaugural lecture as professor of functional foods at Leeds, Prof Williamson added: "Although they might not be essential for growth and development or the maintenance of major body functions, there is increasing knowledge concerning their potential for health maintenance or disease risk reduction throughout adulthood and during ageing."

The 20 foods are:

• apples
• blackberries
• black tea
• blueberries
• broccoli
• cereal bran
• cherries
• cherry tomatoes
• coffee
• cranberries
• dark chocolate
• green tea
• oranges
• peaches
• plums
• raspberries
• red grapes
• red onions
• spinach
• strawberries

I can live with that list. There is nothing on there I wouldn't eat...with a nice big helping of meat of course.

Today's Workouts

11 miles running with some hill repeats thrown in for fun.


Eric isn't allowed outside by himself. So he plays soccer in the bathroom.

Yeah, and no the toilet hadn't been flushed for awhile.

Monday, October 20, 2008

If it's the 20th of the Month

It must be date night. 19 year and 5 month anniversary today. Dinner at a local owned 'regular guy' restaurant. I had wings and an Italian salad. Hunny had cream of crab soup and a crab melt sandwich. Dessert later at home.

Today's Workouts

5.5 mile run at lunch time.

Talk About Killer Boobs

FOUNTAIN, Colorado (AP) -- A Colorado teenager hired men to kill his mother so he could use her money to get breast implants for his girlfriend, police said.
Nikita Lee Weis, 18, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, said Fountain Deputy Police Chief Mike Barnett.
Weis' mother, Hyun Weis, was attacked Thursday with a small wooden baseball bat at her home but escaped, authorities said. She was released Friday from a hospital.
His girlfriend, Sophia Nicole Alsept, and two men police said he hired, Juan Antonio Velez Gonzalez, 18, and Brandon Michael Soroka, 19, were also arrested on the charge of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.
Barnett said Weis wanted to sell his mother's car and use money in her bank accounts to pay for breast implants for Alsept, 21.

Batting for Breasts. I've heard of batathons for different charities but this is taking it to the extreme.

Most guys like their women to have a nice figure. But killing someone for it?! Is it really worth facing life in prison? Couldn't they have dealt drugs like any other self-respecting scum-bag would have?

How does this conversation between boyfriend and girlfriend go?

GF – I wish I had a bigger chest

BF – Yeah me too. I mean I wish yours was bigger too, mines fine. Those 5 push-ups I do each morning are really helping out.

GF – But new boobs cost so much. It’s not like I’m Christine Applegate and have lots of money.

BF – I’ve got enough dough that I could pay for one, but then you’d be lopsided. Maybe we could wait for a buy one get one free sale like the grocery stores have.

GF – I don’t want to wait, I want them now. Hey my mom has a little bit of money saved and she’s got that ’97 Dodge Neon that’s pretty cool.

BF – So what. You want to steal her money and her car and sell it? We might get in trouble if she reported us.

GF – you’re right, let’s kill her instead and then I’ll inherit everything.

BF – cool that’s a much better plan. I know these guys I used to play baseball with who are looking for work….

And don’t worry about my MIL, she’s safe. I’m not going to go all ‘Babe Ruth’ on her with a bat. Sam is perfect just the way she is….

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Today's Workouts

A 30 miles long run (very long run). My longest run ever. Let me just say that 30 miles is a pretty long way to run. First 5 miles my legs were sore and tight then they loosened up. The next 20 miles were good. The last 5 miles were a bit tough as I was getting that beat-up tired feeling. Nice cool weather for the over-heating issues.

When Black Friday Comes

"When Black Friday comes

I'll stand down by the door

And catch the grey men when they

Dive from the fourteenth floor

When Black Friday comes

I'll collect everything I'm owed

And before my friends find out

I'll be on the road

When Black Friday falls you know it's got to be

Don't let it fall on me."

Friday, October 17, 2008

Stuff Catholics Like - Votive Candles

Lighting votive candles in front of an altar or statue is a long standing Catholic tradition.

Most Catholics have lit a votive candle at some point in their life. It may have been when they were young and just used it as an excuse to play with matches (not that my kids would ever do that) or maybe when they were older at a funeral or wedding.

They are lit for many different reasons; for the dead, the living, a sick pet, for a son to get a job and move out of the basement, to get rid of a daughters creepy Goth boyfriend, and that oldie but goodie - a special intention held in the silence of my heart.

The standard procedure is to make a small suggestion donation, light the candle, and then kneel down and say a prayer for the intention desired.

I have know idea what all the colors are for...maybe San Francisco churches

A good picture of Votive Candles in action


Candles were, and are, commonly used to burn before shrines towards which the faithful wish to show special devotion. The candle burning its life out before a statue is no doubt felt in some ill-defined way to be symbolical of prayer and sacrifice. A curious medieval practice was that of offering at any favored shrine a candle or a number of candles equaling in measurement the height of the persons for whom some favor was asked. This was called "measuring to" such or such a saint. The practice can be traced back to the time of St. Radegund (d.587) and later right through the Middle Ages. It was especially common in England and the North of France in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.

Oil Hits a 15 Month Low

Time to fill up the 15 passenger van and Suburban. Might actually be able to fill them up now for less than $200 total. Never thought I'd be excited about sub-$3.00 gas. It's down to $2.85 here.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Today's Workouts

10.5 mile run

Foxy and Smart - You Got it All Babe

We already knew you were healthier from a previous post

But now this new study just came out...

Curvy women are cleverer too

It was already known that men find curvy women more attractive and that they live longer. Now research suggests that women with an hourglass figure are brighter and have cleverer children, too.

The study found that women with large hips and small waists are more intelligent than those with either “apple-shaped” or linear bodies.

So not only are you totally hot, you are also brilliant, and because of you so are the kids.

I guess Alexandria should call you and thank you for the 1400 she got on her SAT. She owes it all to your hips. If I had married some scrawny Ally McBeal type who looks like they haven't had a good meal since the stock market was doing well, Alex would be practicing saying: "would you like fries with that order?" or "would you like a smiley-face sticker" instead of being in her 3rd year of college at age 18.

I'm just glad all that Ben & Jerry's Coffee Heath Bar Crunch that I've bought you over the years wasn't a waste of money. I'd hate to think I was keeping those Spotted-Owl-Kissers in business just for the yummy factor of their products.

I'm not sure how this all correlates with all the people that seem to have their brains in their hind parts. Does it just apply to us regular folks who have their brains up top in their melon? Obviously we will need a government funded study to figure this one out.

There are always exceptions

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Today's Workouts

10 miles running yesterday and 4 miles today. Legs are starting to come around from the race.

It's Hard Being a Little Kid

9:30 PM - Big kids downstairs watching TV - Falling asleep on the stairs while trying to see what's going on - Don't grow up to fast Mary

It's Got to be the In-Laws' Irish Showing Through Again

Sam and I went to the grocery store together the other morning and left Barbara (12) in charge. Here is the text message (typo's and all) she sent us about Joey (10).

"Jo keeps callin me weener and wouldn't let me in the playroom"

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Politics Test

Found this over at Faith and Family

My results are listed below and they actually came out about how I expected. It explains my man-crush on Ron Paul

You are a

Social Liberal
(71% permissive)

and an...

Economic Conservative
(75% permissive)

You are best described as a:


Link: The Politics Test on Ok Cupid
Also : The OkCupid Dating Persona Test

Monday, October 13, 2008

26.2 Miles of Fun

Baltimore Marathon – October 11, 2008

This race is only around 30 minutes from my house and a well run race. They also cap the marathon field at a reasonable amount (4,000). I refuse to do any race that has over 5,000 runners. I really don’t like crowds. UA is the sponsor so you get a nice long-sleeve tech shirt and a cool medal with a Maryland Blue Crab on it. There is also a 4-person relay-team option for the marathon, a ½ marathon, a 5k and a kids fun run going on the same morning. A very inclusive bunch is in charge of this race. All told there are around 20,000 runners doing the various runs. I did this run in ’05. I was well trained for that race but got sick the day before. I did the race anyway. I loaded up on Advil and went for it. I finished it but my time was a sucktacular 4:05:55. About 20-25 minutes off what I had hoped. I felt miserable from about mile 15 on.

The race starts and finishes around the Orioles and Ravens stadiums. The Ravens stadium is opened up before the race so people can use the restrooms. The day was beautiful, around 55 at the 8am start and 70 by noon. Sunny, no clouds and a slight breeze. The family had stuff going on that morning, hometown 5k. 3 of the kids ran the 5k and 2 ran the 1 mile fun run. So I went up there by myself. Which is no big deal since my plan was to do this race as a training run for the JFK 50 miler next month. I used this race as a dress rehearsal for the big race next month. I tested out a new fanny-pack water bottle holder thingy. And I tested out my nutrition plan. Both worked well. But basically I just wanted to run it and enjoy the day. I was worried that if I raced it my legs would be trashed for a few weeks. So I did not take it easy this week so my legs would be tired for the race. I also have a 12 mile run on the schedule for tomorrow so I really needed to behave myself. I’m guessing I’m in around 3:35-3:40 marathon shape right now. So I figured I’d try and run it somewhere around 3:50 (8:37 per mile pace) or so. That would be a personal best by a few minutes for me and not wipe me out.

Lined up like cattle with the rest of the runners around 7:45. It was a little brisk but nothing bad. I wore shorts and a sleeve-less top and was fine. Lots of overdressed people at the start; long-sleeves, running tights, hats, gloves etc…some of these people were going to be hot later on. The race started on time and we inched our way towards the start line like a bunch of lemmings heading off a cliff. I didn’t record my mile splits but I did check the first few to make sure I was going at the right pace. My first mile was 9:20. A little slow but excepted since I had to weave my way through slower people who lined up way too far in front for their ability. Here’s a guideline to know if you lined up correctly: if you are planning to walk most of the race and finish in 6+ hours and you see Kenyans all around you, you are probably too far up front. Scoot back a bit. The second mile was also slow cause I had to go tinkle. Coffee, water and sports drink before the race will do that to you. Towards the end of mile two I finally saw a tree (finding trees is an issue in the city). Made a dash for it, along with about a dozen other guys. It was a large pine tree so there was room for all. Guys were coming and going, I imagine that poor tree will be dead soon. Note: ladies if you are going to go to the bathroom in the trees too, wearing tights that have to be pulled down might not be the most modest option.

The rest of the miles were pretty uneventful. I never felt bad during the race which was nice for a change. Lots of spectators cheering on the course. A few bands playing. Ran through some rough neighborhoods with their crack-houses (no I didn’t stop, although some meth might have improved my time). We ran around Fort McHenry and also had a 1.5 mile lap around a beautiful lake. The last mile was my fastest. I blame that on the crowds. Coming back down into the finish area I was feeling pretty good. The crowds were thick and rowdy and music was blasting so I picked up the pace. Plus I like passing people. I crossed the finishing line, grabbed my finishers medal and a few snacks and water and then jogged to my car. I was home 30 minutes later.

Things I saw: old dude running in a Tux, Ravens Cheerleaders relay team, guy running while juggling 6 balls, dude running while skipping rope, tall very pale and skinny guy wearing nothing but a blue Speedo with HOT written on his rear-end. For the record, I beat all but weirdo Speedo guy.

So I’m pleased with the results especially considering the following: I didn’t taper for the race, I just did my normal workouts. The first 2 miles were slow. I stopped every 4 miles to refill my water bottle.
No stress leading up to the race, I didn’t start checking the 10-day forecast 15 days in advance and I actually slept well the night before. Plus all my training as been slow miles, granted lots of those slow miles, but slow none the less. I figure with some faster training and some rest before the race, I can take off even more time next year.

Final results: 3:46:56. 6 minutes faster than my previous best marathon time back in ‘03.
574th out of 3,114 finishers
91st out of 287 in my age group (40-44)
2nd out of 11 from my home town. I knew if I kept narrowing down the results I’d get a podium spot.

For you running stat geeks here are my times and heart rate averages for this year’s race and the disaster 3 years ago.

2005 – time 4:05:55 average heart rate 166 bpm
2008 – time 3:46:56 average heart rate 155 bpm

So 19 minutes faster this year and avg hr down 11 beats per minute. Even taking in to the account that I’m 3 years older, it’s nice to go faster and work less.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Today's Workouts

26.2 mile trot at the Baltimore Marathon. Longer boring race report to be posted in the next few days...consider yourself warned.

Investment Strategy

If you had purchased $1,000 of AIG stock one year ago, you would have
$42 left.
With Lehman, you would have $6.60 left.
With Fannie or Freddie, you would have less than $5 left.
But if you had purchased $1,000 worth of beer one year ago, drank all of
the beer, then turned in the cans for the aluminum recycling REFUND, you
would have had $214.
Based on the above, the best current investment advice is to drink
heavily and recycle.
It's called the 401-Keg.....

Ok even with the increase in the price of aluminum, I'm sure the $214 figure is high, but you get the point.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Today's Workouts

At the risk of upsetting faithfamilyfarm, 5.5 mile run at lunch time in more gorgeous weather. 72 degrees (not sure what that works out to in that commie Celsius stuff) and sunny.

Better Check Your Wallet

This is from the main headline on

World finance ministers and central bankers will gather in Washington this weekend to brainstorm solutions for the global financial crisis, CNNMoney reports

Yeah that makes me feel better…iIll sleep just great tonight. I wonder how much those meetings will cost us?

Stuff Catholics Like

Today’s post is brought to you by the letters M and C.

Mass Cards. For you non-Catholics. They are basically a greeting card telling you that the sending is having a Mass said for you or maybe a dead relative. They can be a one Mass deal, multiple Masses or a perpetual enrollment (kinda a life time membership – like joining a Bally’s health club).

You can get them at the local church where they will add the person’s name to the next available Mass or you can have an order of priests say the Mass. Many monasteries or orders of priests do this for fundraising. So while you can’t really charge for prayers (at least not since the days of Tetzel), they do come with a suggestion donation. Somewhere in the $5-$10 range.

They are normally given to someone for the benefit of dead relative. They are also given to people when they are sick or just as a thinking of you type of thing. Sam will give them to people as a thank you for favors done.

But I think that sometimes they aren't given for the right reasons. I’m picturing old woman using them as ‘weapons’ against people who have slighted them. Say Old Lady Cooper says something snotty about the behavior of Mrs. Snodgrass’ grandchildren. Just to show how forging and what a good Christian she is, Mrs. Snodgrass might send a Mass Card to Old Lady Cooper. If she’s really ticked she will send a perpetual Mass Card.

One note of caution, if you start buying Mass Cards through the mail, you will end up on the mailing list of every group of priests in the country. I never knew there were so many. We get sample Mass Cards almost daily in the mail. Of course then you will feel bad about throwing out these pretty looking Mass Cards and start saving them all. Pretty soon your house will look worse than crazy collects cat’s lady.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Today's Workouts

10 mile run in even more fantastic weather. Went out at lunch time. It was 82 and sunny.

For Men Only

It’s all about the credit

That’s my motto for a happy marriage. So having trouble lately pleasing the misses? Need to get out of the doghouse? Leave the toilet seat up one too many times? Ruin her new silk dress by drying it on high with your jeans? Are you at wits’ end to come up with some new way to make her happy? Then boy do I have a solution for you. Getting credit for doing something nice is the way to go. You don’t even have to actually do anything or even mean it. It’s the offer/thought that counts. And she never has to know if you do it right. Call it the Dire Straights method; “Get your money for nothin get your chicks for free”.

You can even get credit when you know that you won’t have to do anything. For example; you notice that the dinner dishes are done but offer to do them anyway or you know your wife is busy Tuesday night but you ‘pretend to forget’ and you offer to take her out for dinner and dancing knowing full well that she can’t go. And no this is not cheating; it’s only cheating if you get caught. Warning: you can only play this card so many times. She will catch on and call you on it or worse change her plans and take you up on your offer. And if you are a non-dancer like me this is worse than purgatory.

So be careful, this is potent stuff you are playing with. This technique is not for amateurs. Just like the 18 year-olds that go out every New Year’s Eve and think they can drink with the big boys but end up passed out in a shopping cart in the parking lot of a Piggly Wiggly wearing their underwear on their head and with a ‘I’m in love with Boy George’ sign around their necks (I still haven’t forgiven my college buddies), you newlyweds need to tread lightly here.

Lots of times you can get credit and have fun. Last night after dinner I was playing Smear the Queer (link provide for those of you who didn't grow up in cool neighborhoods) with 4 of the boys out in the front yard. Actually it was kinda a hybrid of football and Smear the Queer (hey no comments, I didn't make up the name). Anyway this is something that’s enjoyable for me and makes my wife happy.

Or you could just go ahead and do something nice that your wife likes and get credit that way. Buy her flowers, go for a walk with her, read to the kids at bedtime…all those are things women like and they really aren’t painful for us husbands to do. Don’t worry I won’t think any less of you if you take the easy way out.

The whole point being to keep building up credit in the First National Bank of Marital Bliss. This credit can be used in different ways. One, the bank gets so full of credits that your wife takes it into her own hands to reward you. And I'm guessing it will be better than the standard bank gift of a free toaster or steak knives. Or you may have to withdraw the credits for a rainy day. Like when you come home at 4am from playing poker with the boys, park the car in the neighbor’s front yard and start baying at the moon.

Guys consider this a public service announcement. No need to thank me. No, please, off your knees, I’m not a god. There’s no reason to worship me. But do feel free to send all the money or running shoes you want. But whatever you do don’t tell my wife about this post. I’m pretty sure she hasn’t caught on to me yet.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Today's Workouts

5.5 mile easy run at lunch time. Great running weather continues.

Maybe it was Esskay and they only like Oscar Meyer

Why is everyone so afraid of Pork Products?

First we had Weiner-Gate in Philly and now we have Bacon-Gate in Ohio.

WEST CHESTER, Ohio -- One of Rep. John Boehner’s local offices was evacuated Monday afternoon after a suspicious package arrived in the mail.

Staffers received the letter from Georgia by U.S. mail. After noticing it was leaking an oily substance, they called the Capitol police in Washington, who advised them to evacuate as a precaution and call in local authorities.

Ok first off, why are people in West Chester, OH (wherever that is) calling the cops in DC? What in the heck are they supposed to do from 300 miles away? Tell them to fry it up and make BLT's out it? I mean if you lived in Houston would you call the cops in Detroit if you were being mugged or if you lived in Chicago and your baseball team hadn't won a world series in a 100 years would you call the LA police for help? Plus it’s not like they called the FBI or something. They called the Capitol Police. These are the ones who keep little kids on field trips behind the velvet ropes so as not to disturb all the important work going on at the Capitol (ok that was hard to type with a straight face). Calling them is like calling Barney Fife to help catch a serial killer.

After an X-ray analysis, investigators determined the package contained bacon.
Boehner voted twice last week for a $700 billion bailout of the financial industry, which passed Friday and was signed into law by President George W. Bush.
Some critics have charged that the legislation contained unnecessary giveaways, which are sometimes referred to as “pork barrel” spending.

I just fine this whole thing hilarious. Mailing bacon to a congressman! Classic! I wished I had thought of it.

No injuries were reported, and the incident remains under investigation.

Wow that was close. Cause we all know how harmful bacon can be. It can cause a mean paper cut. I'm sure they will track down the poor dude that sent it and arrest him on some made up charge. Maybe using the US mail for unauthorized transportation of swine. Maybe I shouldn't assume it was the US mail. Now way it would have gotten there this soon after the vote last week. It must have been UPS or FedEx.

Me? What would I have done? Fried up some eggs and hash-browns to go with it of course.

Boehner is from Ohio, same place as crazy dress up like a cow lady. Coincidence. I think not.

I'll spare everyone another tirade about what a bunch of sissies we have become.

Our public servants hard at work keeping us safe from menacing pork products. At least they didn't blow the bacon up like they did the poor defenseless weiners in Philly

They just went a little Hog Wild in OH. What a load of Hogwash. So this wasn’t Ham-Let. Sorry to Boar you. But don’t be Bacon me mad. That’s enough for now; I need to go watch the Squeal of Fortune.

Hogs and Kisses

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Today's Workouts

10.5 mile run in fantastic weather.

It All depends on Your Definition of Gross

"Dad, Robert choked me"

"Why did Robert choke you Dominic"?

"He said I did something gross.

"What did you do Dominic"?

"It wasn't that gross. I just licked my toes"

"Go back up to bed Dominic and tell Robert not to choke you. Oh and don't lick your toes anymore".

Monday, October 6, 2008

Today's Workouts

5.5 mile easy paced run at lunch. Feeling perkier.

Don’t Take it Personally Babs

Maybe there is something to this middle-child syndrome. Yesterday morning we did our normal get everyone dressed and out the door and rush to church thing. We needed to be there at least 15 minutes early since Caleb was serving High Mass.

We actually had it easy yesterday. Alex and Josh are away at school, and Lizzie was staying home with 2 of the little ones since she was going to a teen Mass Sunday night. So that meant we only had…um…let me get my shoes off…11 kids – 2 at school…- 3 staying at home…carry the 1…….…. = 6 kids going to church…I think. So we get a little was down the road and Sam realizes that Barbara (age 12 and the 5th child) wasn’t in the van. Not only that, no one had seen her that morning...she was still in the sack.

Part of it was Babs’ fault. She was pouting the night before because we moved Hunter (Cecilia 2) into her room. She is now sharing her room with Hunter and Mary (4). To make a long story short, Eric (1) busted up his crib on Saturday and we moved a few kids around. And Barbara was not happy about it so apparently she slept in the Eric’s old room which is now empty.

Where were we? Oh yeah, in the van. So I made a u-turn, try that in a 15 passenger van, and Sam called the house and told Lizzie to get Barbara up and have her get dressed. We picked up a non-plussed Barbara and went to church. She was very tired and grouchy looking for most of Mass.

The birth order of our kids never has seemed to make any difference on their personalities but maybe I was wrong and we are ignoring Barbara and she will be some mal-adjusted loser of a kid, staying in her room all the time, conjugating verbs and sewing Little House on the Prairie replica dresses.

Nah, not Babs, she is our social butterfly. She’s always playing friends, going to some party or generally having a great time. So much for the shrinks and their middle child syndrome.

I mean if Jan Brady survived with having to live up to Marica and put up with that whiny Cindy, than Babs will be just fine.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Today's Workouts

4.3 mile run.

Stuff Catholics Like - Being First Out of the Parking Lot

Ladies and Gentlemen welcome to The Sacred Heart 500

Is trying to get out of your church parking lot like a NASCAR race? Or maybe it’s more like a demolition derby?

The priest could have just given a homily on patience. But Catholics (maybe other churches have this problem also) love being the first one out of the church parking lot (whatever happened to the First Shall be Last?). This happens in various stages at our church.

First you have those people who leave right after communion (the old ‘dine and dash’ or ‘Judas shuffle’). They are still chewing as they bolt out the door and make a beeline for their cars.

Then you have those who technically stay to the very end. As soon as the priest gives the final blessing (to them it sounds like 'start your engines') they are racing him down the aisle. Quick swipe at the holy water font then whoosh out the door and driving away in no time at all. They move faster than Rosanne Barr at an all you can eat buffet.

Thirdly you have parishioners who stay to the end and then run to their cars to start the race out of the parking lot. Tires screaming like a bunch of tweens at a Jonas Brothers concert. Whatever you do don’t walk or drive in front of these folks, they will run you down and turn you into road kill. These people don’t yield and they don’t stop.

It really isn’t even necessary at our church. We have a cop at every Mass to stop traffic on the main road and let people out. At the most it’s going to take about 5 minutes to get out. Barring some emergency do people really need to drive like Mad Max in a church parking lot…save that kind of behavior for Christmas season at the Malls.

And heaven help you if you are at the Noon Mass during football season and the Redskins have a 1pm game. The Mass normally ends around 12:50-12:55. Giving the devoted Skin followers even less time to make kickoff. Well if they were too hung-over from the night before to make and early Mass, tough.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Today's Workouts

A lame 10.5 miles. It was supposed to be a 16 mile run but I wasn't feeling the love today so I bailed early.

Are You Part of the $500 Club?

Sam made the monthly trek to BJ's wholesale club yesterday afternoon (after stopping at the bank to take out a 2nd mortgage). Maybe I can default on that loan and get the morons in DC to bail me out too. Oh wait they only bailout politically connected big banks, never mind. Anyway it was a new record high - Yea! But it's really not a lot of stuff. Ever spend a small fortune on groceries and still can't find anything in the house to eat?

This wasn't fun-stuff shopping either. There are no running shoes on this list. Nothing black and lacy. No Chia Pets, mood rings or pet rocks. No Ribeyes for the grill. No this is your basic boring family stuff; toilet paper (lots of tushes here), diapers (once again the tush thing), laundry detergent (30+ loads a week), mini-pads with wings (they fly?), 300 pack of Dum-Dums for Halloween (our house is going to get egged for giving those out), plus trash bags, butter, milk etc...the excitement of it all is killing me.

And yes I realize that olives, cinnamon gum and Slim Jims are on the list. Don't hate us cause we know how to live large. But the 6 year-old pays for the Slim Jims (2-100 packs)and then he sells them to his siblings for a quarter each, making a tidy profit. The olives are Sam's, she's got a wicked martini habit. The gum, Sam got that for me. Apparently I have dog-breath. But no more. Look for an announcement about #12 soon.

On the bright side, there was a $1.50 instant rebate on an 18-pack of light bulbs. So I got that going for me, which is nice.

Spending $577.43 on a trip to the grocery store wouldn't be so bad if this was food for a few weeks. But it's not. It's just some of the basic food and household items. We hit BJ's every month or so for this stuff. All our regular (meats, produce, dairy etc...) grocery shopping is done weekly.

Food is now the number 1 expense in our budget. It passed the mortgage in the last year or so. The prices really have gone up quite a bit on the basics. In spite of what the official government inflation figures might say. While our mortgage has stayed pretty much the same over the years.

I've tried everything to save money on food, short of going Hannibal Lecter or inducing an eating disorder in my kids. All the meats we buy are on sale and borderline gangrene, we use generics when they are a better deal, we get day old bread, we've eaten the kids goldfish, we only have dessert on even number days and the kids have volunteered to give up their vegetables to help out. Brings a tear to my eye when they are so considerate.

Plus people are always giving us food. Leftover from parties, church functions etc...we are the drop-off point for excess food. We are like some hurricane Katrina refuge camp. So I guess I should just be grateful that the bill wasn't a whole lot more.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Today's Workouts

4.3 mile easy run at lunch time.

Udderly Ridiculous

Woman Wearing Cow Suit Charged With Disorderly Conduct

MIDDLETOWN, OH -- A Middletown woman is accused of being disorderly in public -- while wearing a cow suit.

A police report filed about the incident said Michelle Allen allegedly chased children in her neighborhood while wearing the suit on Monday evening.

Allen also urinated on a neighbor's front porch, the report said, and was warned by officers to go home and stay there.

Allen was charged with disorderly conduct after an officer found her causing traffic problems on North Verity Parkway.

The officer's report stated that Allen was verbally abusive to him on the trip to jail and smelled of alcohol.

The report did not speculate as to why Allen was wearing the cow suit

Let's review the pertinent details of this story. Shall we?

A police report filed about the incident said Michelle Allen allegedly chased children in her neighborhood while wearing the suit on Monday evening.

This is where all the Vegans of the world come from. They may not become full fledged sprout munchers, but at the very least those kids will be eating at Chick-fil-a for the rest of their lives. If I were the police I'd see of Ms Allen has any ties to the local Chick-fil-a.

Allen also urinated on a neighbor's front porch.

While I do realize that if you gotta go you gotta go. But this crosses the line. Cows put out a serious amount of urine.

Allen was charged with disorderly conduct after an officer found her causing traffic problems

Don't you just hate it when cows won't get out of the fast-lane? She's lucky no one plowed into her and turned her into ground beef.

The officer's report stated that Allen was verbally abusive to him

Mooing curse words at the officer I imagine. How do you say 'dirty pig' in cow?

...and smelled of alcohol

Wow what a shock that alcohol was involved. Just what do cows drink? Spiked milkshakes? Cream de minth? Hot Buttered Rum?

The report did not speculate as to why Allen was wearing the cow suit

Well besides the obvious, alcohol. Maybe she had some bad childhood experiences (everyone else uses that excuse). She might have been tipped over a lot as a kid. Or maybe she grew up next to a slaughterhouse. This story would make more sense if she was from WI and not OH. If she was from WI I'd just assume she was a Cheesehead who was upset that Brett Favre left the Packers.

This is no Bull. I wouldn’t Steer you wrong. I don’t want to Cow you into liking this post. I guess I've Milked this story for all it's worth, sorry I couldn't do Butter. You have probably Herd enough. I guess this story wasn't the Cream of the crop. I'll MOOve on now. I guess you aren't in the MOOed for more so I'll stop now. I promise I won't Udder another word.

I gotta admit it really is a sweet looking cow suit