Friday, October 30, 2009

Corn Maze for Blondes

PC running amok this week (just like every other week)

Bob Griese – former Dolphin QB and current commentator for ESPN college football games was suspended for 1 week for speculating that race car driver Juan Pablo Montoya of Columbia was out eating a taco. Holy Salsa Batman! We have become such a sensitive people. Griese should have been fired for being a nitwit. Tacos do not eat Columbian food.

Larry Johnson – Kansas City Chiefs running back was suspended indefinitely. His crime? Apparently he used the F-word on twitter and again when a reporter asked him a question. No not THAT F-word, I’ sure that F-word would have been just fine. He used what is called a ‘gay slur’. Basically he called his coach a f@g. This set the homo-rights group into a big old prissy hissy fit. Are these people serious? Have they ever been involved in sports (stupid question)? You can’t go 2 minutes in a guy’s locker room without someone calling someone a f@g, queer, pansy a host of other indelicate names. It's not gonna stop and you can't change it people.

He wasn’t suspended, which he should have been, for being disrespectful to his coach. It was his choice of insults that did him in. He could have used the other F-word accompanied with mother in referring to his coach and nothing probably would have happened to him.

Heck for all I know he could have been using the word f@g in the British meaning, maybe his coach is a smoker.

The Chiefs actually did him a favor by suspended him since they suck so bad.

Sure calling someone a f@g isn’t nice. But neither is calling them a butthead, weenie or dweeb either. I'm not suggesting we call anyone any of these names but quite taking yourselves so serious people.

Of course if you are on the correct side of the media (aka you are a flaming liberal) you don’t get in a lot of trouble. You just have to offer a semi-sincere apology. Witness Florida Democrat Rep. Alan Grayson called Linda Robertson, an aide to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, a "K Street whore." Did Grayson get suspended or censured? Um, no. I would argue that calling a woman who you barely know a whore is a whole lot worse than a football player calling his coach a f@g. I’m not saying, I’m just saying.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Today's Workouts

4.5 middling miles today in blah weather while wearing my Asics DS Trainers.

Attributable to Larry, the Cable Guy

Because with all the problems in the world, real and imagined, life is too short and important to take seriously.

1. A day without sunshine is like night.

2. On the other hand, you have different fingers.

3. 42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.

4. 99 percent of lawyers give the rest a bad name.

5. Remember, half the people you know are below average.

6. He who laughs last, thinks slowest.

7. Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.

8. The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese in the trap.

9. Support bacteria. They're the only culture most people have.

10. A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

11. Change is inevitable, except from vending machines.

12. If you think nobody cares, try missing a couple of payments.

13. How many of you believe in psycho-kinesis? Raise my hand.

14. OK, so what's the speed of dark?

15.... When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.

16. Hard work pays off in the future. Laziness pays off now.

17. How much deeper would the ocean be without sponges?

18. Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines....

19. What happens if you get scared half to death, twice?

20. Why do psychics have to ask you your name?

21. Inside every older person is a younger person wondering, 'What the heck happened?'

22. Just remember -- if the world didn't suck, we would all fall off.

23. Light travels faster than sound. That's why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

24. Life isn't like a box of chocolates. It's more like a jar of jalapenos.
What you do today, might burn your butt tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Today's Workouts

10k at lunch time. Sunny and 60. Running shoes worn - END OTG's

Blessed the Husband of a Good Wife

Don’t you just hate it when the readings from Mass convict you and make you feel like dirt? Or in my case dirt from Three Mile Island.

Both of the readings below made me realize how truly blessed I am to have found and married such a wonderful woman. Ok realized isn’t the best word, of course I’ve known it all along. It’s not like it just dawned on me. I’ve known she was special since the first time I met her 25 years ago. Reminded is probably a better word. Sadly I tend to take my bride for granted. She is so wonderful and I am so lucky to have her that I just assume she will always be there for me and the kids (which she is) but she doesn’t get the thanks and recognition that she deserves for putting up with me and the little blessings from God.

Anyway between the readings below and having her down and out for a month after her c-section, I got a great reminder during that time of how much I have to be thankful for.

The first reading from a few Sunday’s ago

I prayed, and prudence was given me;
I pleaded, and the spirit of wisdom came to me.
I preferred her to scepter and throne,
and deemed riches nothing in comparison with her,
nor did I liken any priceless gem to her;
because all gold, in view of her, is a little sand,
and before her, silver is to be accounted mire.
Beyond health and comeliness I loved her,
and I chose to have her rather than the light,
because the splendor of her never yields to sleep.
Yet all good things together came to me in her company,
and countless riches at her hands.

Wisdom 7:7-11

Then this reading at a wedding last weekend that we attended

Blessed the husband of a good wife, twice-lengthened are his days; A worthy wife brings joy to her husband, peaceful and full is his life. A good wife is a generous gift bestowed upon him who fears the Lord; Be he rich or poor, his heart is content, and a smile is ever on his face.
A gracious wife delights her husband, her thoughtfulness puts flesh on his bones; A gift from the Lord is her governed speech, and her firm virtue is of surpassing worth. Choicest of blessings is a modest wife, priceless her chaste soul. A holy and decent woman adds grace upon grace; indeed, no price is worthy of her temperate soul. Like the sun rising in the Lord’s heavens, the beauty of a virtuous wife is the radiance of her home.

Sirach 26:1-4, 13-16

Ok I know the first reading is talking about wisdom not wives but I decided it was talking to me about my wife and what a gift she is to me. A gift to be cherished and loved and protected and placed above all other gifts. As for the second reading from Sirach, the author could have had my wife in mind when he wrote it. With the possible exception of “governed speech”. She does like to talk every now and again ;)

“ price is worthy of her...” Sam you truly priceless to me. Thank you so much for saying yes all those years ago.

And thanks for putting up with:

• My running all the time
• My skanky toenails from running
• My joking about trading you in for 2 20 year-old (twins)
• The hair sprouting on my ears
• My smart-assedness (I’m pretty sure that is a word)
• HT and TTN
• My taking you for granted
• My complaining about the house
• (Insert all other faults of mine here)

Just don’t let it go to your head.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Today's Workouts

10 mile run at lunch time in the cool ran. Actually ran a decently fast pace for once. Yo Jo, I wore my Saucony Tangent 3 running shoes. I know you were curious.

Swine Flu in Pictures

Thanks Maurisa

Monday, October 26, 2009

How to tell which house is ours

When giving directions to our house, we usually just give enough directions to get people in the general vicinity of our neighborhood and tell the people they will know our house when they see it. Once you get to our street, our house will stand out more than my bride at a NOW convention. It has a distinctive look, not to mention smell. Bikes, strollers, car seats, skate boards, footballs, soccer balls etc...our yard has everything but grass.

Most of the people who live around us fall in to 3 categories:

1) Retirees who have lots of free time and are always puttering around the yard and keeping it nice and clean looking. These are the people who in the Fall when t he leaves are starting to fall down are out there picking up the leaves the moment two or more are on the ground.

2) People with 1 or 2 perfect kids. The kind who besides helping their parents do yard work (willingly) spend the rest of their time taking chess and piano lessons, conjugating verbs and memorizing Pi out to 100 decimal places

3) Childless yuppies who hire illegal’s (they pay them a living wage of course) to keep the yard and house looking great so they can do more important things on Saturday mornings… like put on their hand-dyed jeans, vintage t-shirts and expensive running shoes that are never run in and drive their Prius’ to a local coffee house that only serves ‘fair trade’ coffee, then off to the dog park and the organic pet food and designer cheese stores (I like cheese too). They really do have nice yards though.

Needless to say our neighbors don’t always appreciate living next to 12 kids who are home all day long due to homeschooling. Your 5 year-old son exposes himself to your neighbor’s daughter or pees on his wife’s daffodils and you are labeled for life. I mean how were my kids supposed to know that the grandmother who lives next door had a heart condition and was afraid of snakes.

I think my neighbors have finally had enough of us. They spent the weekend trimming and shaping their hedges that border our yard.

Today's Workouts

6.2 miles run at lunch on a lovely fall day. I wore my END OTG running shoes and yes Jo the shoe always matters with running.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Today's Workouts

So I did get out and run yesterday. Not the long run I wanted to do but two short runs. 4 miles at lunch time wearing my Asics DS Trainer running shoes and then another 3.5 miles just before dinner. I needed to pick my car up from the shop and the weather was still great out there so I ran to garage wearing my Asics Speed Stars.

Today I ran 6 miles on my lunch hour while wearing my END OTG running shoes. Still not digging these shoes but they cost too much to get rid of.

My Deepest Apologies

After years of mocking Al Gore and all the other tree-huggers and spotted owl kissers for going crazy over this global warming hoax I have to apologize (I mean the man did give us the Internet, isn’t that enough? What more can we ask of him). It appears that they were right along and I was mistaken (there is always a first time) and the earth is indeed heating up. It’s my entire fault for taking the lack of proof at face value and assuming they were wrong. I mean just because we are having milder and a cooler summer than normal how was I to know that it was actually getting hotter? I just assumed that since it has been colder than normal this summer that it was...well...actually colder than normal. Stupid me.

But finally I have proof and have seen the errors of my ways. I now will be selling my 15-passenger van and buying a Smart Car. I’m sure I can stuff all 14 of us into it somehow. Maybe a roof rack. We will also be selling our big house and moving out into the country and building a log cabin and eat granola for the rest of our lives. We will be getting rid of our clothes that are made in an environmentally unfriendly way and become one with nature – it won’t be pretty.

What is this proof that could make me change my lifestyle so drastically? Well see for yourself. Scary isn’t it? See ya at Whole Foods.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Some days working from home is alright

Working from home can be a challenge at times. From things like oatmeal on your laptop, your desk used as a holder for laundry, the 3 year-old yelling that she needs her behind wiped, to having a foxy wife around all the time who makes you want to stop working and make-out, it can be hard to get work accomplished at times.

As I type my bride has abandoned me to have her hair and nails done. Or she might be taking too kids to the pediatrician and running some other errors, I’m not sure.

Anyway while she is out the young boys (ages 2, 7, and 9) are playing outback. The older two are ‘watching’ the 2 year-old for me. I decided to check on them because that is the kind of responsible dad I am, and because I hadn’t seen them in a few hours and it had gotten awfully quiet. They have made some bow and arrows and are wearing various sports equipment and having some kind of mini-war. Shh don’t tell the wife. She worries.

It’s always funny until someone loses an eye or a spleen

Small Successes Thursday

  • Woke up and get the little kids and let my bride sleep in
  • Had coffee
  • Solved world hunger, told no one
  • Clipped my toenails
  • Ate breakfast (spaghetti and meatballs)
  • Came in 2nd in the Nobel Peace Pipe contest
  • Kissed the wife
  • Offered to take in the Wife and Kids of a good friend who has Swine Flu if the worst should happen
  • Rearranged my sock drawer
  • Ate lunch (ham and taters)
  • Yelled at the kids but refrained from whacking any
  • Found a cure for cancer
  • Cleaned the lint out of my belly button - its been awhile
  • Ate dinner (pizza and chicken pot pie)
  • whacked a few kids at bed time so I take back the earlier success - I stink at this game

go HERE for Success that are...well...a lot more successful than mine.

Today's Workouts

Nothing yet!

I ignored the alarm that went off at 4:20 this morning and went back to bed. Staying in the warm and cozy love-nest, under the down comforter with my hunny and the newborn seemed a lot more appealing then dragging my old rear-end out of bed and running 20 some miles in the cool dark morning.

Man I'm getting old or something. It used to be that I wouldn't postpone my run for anything. Sweetie Pie could be tempting me with a key lime pie in one hand, a cheesecake in the other and wearing the latest Victoria Secrets tramp-wear and I'd still go out and run for 3 hours in an ice-storm.

Heck in the old days I'd even run if the streets had a million-man march going on one side and a NOW march on the other....sigh....the good old days. Now I sleep in and run at lunch time when the weather is pleasant. At least I think I do. I'll let you know later today if my sorry tookus got out there or not. As Mick and the Stones sang "what a drag it is getting old"

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Today's Workouts

14 miles in the lovely sunshine. The Seattle, or maybe it was Wales, like weather is gone. 65 and loads of sun today at lunch time. I wore my new Saucony Tangent 3 running shoes that I got last week. Yes I know that it's shocking that I got new shoes, almost as shocking as it would be if a certain US president were to win, oh say the Nobel Peace prize for doing nothing other than (well half black, maybe he should have gotten have the prize). I bought the shoes last week with a Visa Debit card I got as a rebate from Verizon Wireless when I upgraded my phone. I told Sam she could have the Debit Card but she waited too long, I think I gave her 1 hour to spend it and it could only be used at Victoria Secrets. Oh well her loss.

Aren't they a thing of beauty?

For anyone that cares I got the new Blackberry Tour. It's a great if somewhat addicting phone (they don't call it a Crackberry for nothing). Besides being a phone it is also has a nice camera. And you can have up to 10 email accounts routed to it plus you can browse the web and it will even make coffee, give you a pedicure and trim your nose-hair. Heck I can even post to my blog from it. Aren't y'all lucky?

How to Protect Yourself Against the Flu Without Vaccination


Following these simple guidelines will keep your immune system in optimal working order so that you're far less likely to acquire the infection to begin with:

Optimize your vitamin D levels. As I've previously reported, optimizing your vitamin D levels is one of the absolute best strategies for avoiding infections of ALL kinds, and vitamin D deficiency is likely the TRUE culprit behind the seasonality of the flu -- not the flu virus itself. So get your rear-ends out in the sunshine for a bit each day. And what if you live way up north where you don't get a lot of sun in the winter? Well move then. What are you doing up there anyway? ;)

This is probably the single most important and least expensive action you can take. I would STRONGLY urge you to have your vitamin D level monitored to confirm your levels are therapeutic at 50-70 and done by a reliable vitamin D lab like Lab Corp.

Avoid Sugar and Processed Foods. Sugar decreases the function of your immune system almost immediately, and as you likely know, a strong immune system is key to fighting off viruses and other illness. Be aware that sugar is present in foods you may not suspect, like ketchup and fruit juice.

Get Enough Rest. Just like it becomes harder for you to get your daily tasks done if you're tired, if your body is overly fatigued it will be harder for it to fight the flu. Be sure to check out my article Guide to a Good Night's Sleep for some great tips to help you get quality rest.

Have Effective Tools to Address Stress. We all face some stress every day, but if stress becomes overwhelming then your body will be less able to fight off the flu and other illness.

Exercise. When you exercise, you increase your circulation and your blood flow throughout your body. The components of your immune system are also better circulated, which means your immune system has a better chance of finding an illness before it spreads. You can review my exercise guidelines for some great tips on how to get started.

Take a Good Source of Animal-Based Omega-3 Fats. Increase your intake of healthy and essential fats like the omega-3 found in krill oil, which is crucial for maintaining health. It is also vitally important to avoid damaged omega-6 oils that are trans fats and in processed foods as it will seriously damage your immune response.

Wash Your Hands. Washing your hands will decrease your likelihood of spreading a virus to your nose, mouth or other people. Be sure you don't use antibacterial soap for this -- antibacterial soaps are completely unnecessary, and they cause far more harm than good. Instead, identify a simple chemical-free soap that you can switch your family to.

Use Natural Antibiotics. Examples include colloidal silver, oil of oregano, and garlic. These work like broad-spectrum antibiotics against bacteria, viruses, and protozoa in your body. And unlike pharmaceutical antibiotics, they do not appear to lead to resistance.

Avoid Hospitals and Vaccines. In this particular case, I'd also recommend you stay away from hospitals unless you're having an emergency, as hospitals are prime breeding grounds for infections of all kinds, and could be one of the likeliest places you could be exposed to this new bug.

Keep in mind that virtually all vaccinations will LOWER your immune system (this is the main job of the vaccine adjuvants), NOT make it stronger!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Today's Workouts

First run in about 5 days that wan't in 40 degree rain. It was sunny and around 55 out at lunch time when I ran 6.2 miles. I wore my END OTG running shoes. I don't really like this shoes much. I've only run in them 4 times so far so I will give them a bit longer and see if I warm up to them.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

It Has Been a Busy Week for our Fearless Leader

First he won the Nobel Prize

Then on Monday he won "Country Music Entertainer of the Year" award for his remake of "Did I Shave my Legs for This?"

On Tuesday he won the Heisman trophy...before the college football season was even over

On Wednesday, 2 weeks into the Hockey season, he won the Stanley Cup...single-handily

Thursday saw him winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup on the way to pick-up the Super Bowl trophy

On Friday he was given a long overdue Grammy for his song "I'm God, You're Not"

Saturday morning he was riding into Paris to complete his victory at the Tour de France and then he managed to fly to Georgia in time to win the Masters

And then on Sunday Obama the Merciful rested

Article on the Munchkin's Baptism from the Catholic Standard

From the Washington Diocese's newspaper. Notice how there are no quotes from yours truly. I'm pretty sure either my bride or the bishop (or maybe both) were bad-mouthing me to the reporter.

At Baptism, bishop welcomes 12th child into his Catholic Church family

Special to the Standard

Returning to the site where they wed just over 20 years ago, Rob and Cecilia "Sam” entered the historic chapel at Sacred Heart Parish in Bowie to celebrate the Baptism of their 12th child, Kolbe Peter on Oct. 3.

Washington Auxiliary Bishop Martin Holley baptized the baby with assistance from three seminarians - including Joshua , Kolbe's older brother. After the sacrament, the bishop gently lifted the 18-day-old infant and presented him to family members and friends gathered in the chapel. Bishop Holley then announced, "Kolbe Peter, you are now baptized and initiated into the Catholic Church."

Earlier the prelate told participants through the beautiful sacrament of marriage, Kolbe's parents became co-creators with God - and the new baby is a "product of that love," Bishop Holley added.

"Out of the sacrament of marriage is born all the other sacraments," Bishop Holley later said. "The graces from (his parents') marriage continues to be perpetuated in the life of this young boy - who will eventually make a decision of his own life," whether that choice be marriage, a vocation to the religious life or a faithful lay person.

As the eighth of 14 children, Bishop Holley seemed right at home in front of the family. A large family teaches you Gospel truths, Bishop Holley noted. Children learn about God's love through their parents - their first teachers. Later, children are taught how to love their neighbors by learning to love their siblings. "We often refer to the family as the 'domestic church,'" Bishop Holley told the Catholic Standard.

He pointed out the younger children in the family who were gathered around their older siblings and parents watching them intently. "All eyes are looking at their parents," Bishop Holley said. "The graces that come from marriages, are important for society, and so important for the continuation of the Church," Bishop Holley said. "Marriage gives life to all the other sacraments."

Family friend Peter Murphy called the Baptism "a beautiful witness to the faith." Murphy, who also serves as the director of the archdiocesan Office of Family Life, said the family witnesses to God's love and the joy of life in their everyday lives. "They are a large family, but are selfless and generous to others around them. They are the ones helping the community," he added. "That is what family is all about."

Seminarian Daniel Turski said he was happy to be asked to assist the bishop during the Baptism. "It was definitely a look into my future ministry," Turski said. "I love kids." The young student called the family "a witness of authentic happiness." Seminarian Andrew Gronotte also said "it was great to be able to participate in bringing a new member into the Church."

Joshua received special permission to return home for the Baptism. The oldest son in the family, Joshua is currently a seminarian for the Legionaries of Christ. "We went over Baptism in class" he said, but he never thought he would be invited to assist the bishop with his brother's Baptism. Joshua credited his large family with teaching him the skills needed to live in a religious community. "My mom helped a lot - she created a good environment, praying the Rosary, attending daily Mass."

His mother, Sam , who was still recovering from complications after her first C-section delivery, said planning the Baptism gave her something special to look forward to and watching Joshua help out was "icing on the cake."

All of her previous 11 children had been baptized at Sacred Heart in the same chapel where Archbishop John Carroll was elected in 1788 as the first Catholic bishop in the United States. Sam said she began thinking about the possibility of inviting a bishop for the new baby's Baptism several months before his birth. A friend from another diocese suggested the custom of a bishop celebrating the sacrament for the 12th member of a family. So although she had never heard of such a tradition, Sam spoke with her pastor, Msgr. Charles Parry, who helped arrange the event. Bishop Holley "was so gentle, so personable," Sam said.

The mother said her prayers for the newest member of the family are the same as all her children. "Just that he'll grow up loving the Church - loving his family, that he'll love his faith as much as his brothers and sisters do." Sam paused and added, "That's every parent's wish for their children - that they'll always keep the faith."

Kolbe Peter born Sept. 15 joined his excited siblings Alexandria, 19; Joshua, 18; Caleb, 16; Elizabeth, 15; Barbara, 13; Joseph, 11; Robert, 9; Dominic, 7; Mary, 6; Cecilia, 3; and Eric, 2. His older siblings, Caleb and Elizabeth were chosen as to be his godparents.

"My heart was bursting," Sam said, "my favorite thing was having them all together."

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Maybe I Should Have Married the Baker or the Candlestick Maker

Instead of The Butcher

The first picture is Eric before he was mauled by Sam the Slayer. Look how cute he is. Now look at the after picture. What a train wreck. Obviously he’s still got a cute face; he is my son after all. She could have at least had it done professionally. I mean I am grateful that she saved me some moolah but come on he looks almost as bad as Don King or Carrot Top on a good day.

And no I’m not one of those aging hippies who can no longer grow hair and is trying to live vicariously through my children...ok well maybe I am one of those but that’s beside the point. He looks like he has the mange or as been mauled by a cranky pit bull. Heck he was so traumatized by the haircut that it damaged his eyes.

Well it could have been worse...He could have ended up looking like this kid

But I do think it's a lot worse that my Blogging Sister's bad haircut experience no matter what she says.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

2009 Baltimore Marathon Race Recap

2009 Baltimore Marathon race report

A quick report, I hope. This is the third time I have run this race and my marathon PR (personal record) was set here last year. My plan for this year (same as last) was to treat it as a training run for the JFK 50 miler which is 6 weeks from today. I purposely didn’t taper this week, although I did have a few easy weeks at the end of September while Sam was on her death bed recovering from the staph infection that was a parting gift from the ghetto hospital where she had the c-section.

The weather was fine. Mostly cloudy and in the upper 60’s. Around the halfway point it started raining lightly off and on for the rest of the race. This prevented me from getting overheated.

I got up around 4:30am and did my normal pre-race routine: shower, coffee, light breakfast, game of twister, brushed my teeth, made out with the wife etc… and then headed up to the race fairly early. I got there almost 2 hours before the start and got a killer parking space. I spared the family from having to attend another one of my time consuming races and went alone. The race start is near the Orioles and Ravens stadiums so I hung out at the Ravens stadium which was open to the public and used their bathrooms 3 times. I wanted to leave something special for those no-account Ravens.

Besides the marathon there is also a team relay-marathon, half-marathon, 5k and a kid’s fun run. I’m surprised they don’t have a sack-race and a race for one-legged, blue-eyed Nigerians. This race is more inclusive than the Obama administration. And Under Armor is the sponsor and they decided to make this the world’s first ‘green’ marathon. Whatever that means. One thing it meant was that the UA race shirts we were given were made from 100% recycled material. In this case plastic bottles…whatever.

Running with half-marathoners and relay runners can be annoying at times. Besides making the course a little bit more crowded (ok a lot more crowded) it can be a bit depressing having these perky runners pass you. On the other hand it’s a hell of a lot of fun to finish the race strong and to smoke some of those runners. And for the record Hunny, I did not run with any of the Raven cheerleaders who had a few relay teams running the race. And it’s not because they were too fast.

I started out fairly easily and my legs were pretty sore and tight from all the running I did this week. By the third mile all the pre-race coffee and Gatorade had caught up with me and I pulled over at one of the few trees in the city. Actually me and about every other guy, and a few women, in the race stopped at these few trees. I’m guessing they are dead today. after the lighting the ballast I settled in to a pace that was a little faster than planned but I felt comfortable.

The course is a mix of inner city slum type areas with crack houses, the Inner Harbor area, historic sites and the DINK/Yuppie areas with a Starbucks and sushi bar on every corner. If Starbucks cared about the community they would have had little sample cups of coffee out there for the runners…the smell of the coffee was driving me nuts.

The first half of the race went by fast and around mile 10 or so I saw two of Sam’s sisters who were there watching the race. They did a great job of yelling and cheering me own. Thanks for the kisses ladies. And Joanie, nice pom-poms.

During the second half I got in a nice zone and the miles flew by. Other than the half-marathoners merging in with the real runners ;) at mile 16, dodging through them was like playing Frogger, the second half was uneventful. There is nothing like being 16 miles into a hard race and having to squeeze through or run around a bunch of plus-sized charity ‘runners’ walking 4 abreast and chatting merrily away – It’s a race people. I guess it’s my own fault for not being a faster runner and getting past them before the merge area. I would like to do this race a 4th time but the way they handle the half-marathon keeps getting worse every year. Hopefully enough people complained about it and it will be changed in the future.

In the later miles a lot of the neighborhoods have their own mini aid stations set up. There were two places giving out gummy bears and one giving out peanut M&M’s. Nothing like a handful of sweaty M&Ms at mile 23 of a race to perk you up.

Around mile 25 I started feeling ragged but by that point you are running down hill and the crowds are thick and energetic so slowing down is not an option. I must have passed a few hundred people the last mile. It really is a great feeling blasting pass people who are dying when you feel great. I’ve been on the other end of that feeling so I’m not totally without sympathy for them. I mean I didn’t call anyone loser or lard-butt as I passed them, at least not out loud.

A final sprint and I’m across the finish line to the cheers of Raven cheerleaders working the finish line. They weren’t nearly as pretty or as enthusiastic as Sam’s sisters. I dodge all the people who think it’s a good idea to come to a complete stop just across the line and I jog through the crowds; grab my finisher’s medal and some water and potato chips. I keep running and head back to my car so I can get on the road. As I’m running through the crowds to get to my car I get the “why you still running comments?” “Because if you had a wife as hot as mine at home you’d be rushing to get to her too”. A half hour later I’m home.

The results:
For some reason my Garmin GPS watch had me finishing about a minute faster than my official chip time of 3:44:18. I have the watch set to auto-pause whenever I stop. And I stopped once for a potty break and a few times at aid stations to refill my bottle with Gatorade. Anyway I did manage to set a new personal best by 1:36.

2008 - 3:45:54
2009 - 3:44:18

40-44 age group: 69th out of 290

Overall results 475th out of 3087 total finishers

Friday, October 9, 2009

I Got Enough Lemons to Open a Lemonade Stand

Here in Maryland we have a lemon law for cars. If the car turns out to be a lemon bring it back for a full refund. We really need the same thing for spouses and kids.

Besides Sam recent c-section and subsequent staph infection Caleb hurt himself a few weeks ago playing soccer. It seemed to be a sprained ankle. He tried to practice again last night and it was still messed up. I took him to the orthopedic Dr this morning and they x-rayed it...broken tibula. He is now in cast for a month.

Sam has Barbara at the podiatrist this afternoon having surgery on an ingrown toenail.

I need a refund

Monday, October 5, 2009

There is a God - part 2

Backstreet Boy gets swine flu
Posted: 04:22 PM ET
Just as their album “This is Us” is about to drop (Tuesday October 6th), the Backstreet Boys are dropping out of several scheduled appearances. Brian Littrell has been diagnosed with H1N1 flu, also known as swine flu.

It’s unfortunate timing – the band was scheduled to appear today for a signing at NYC PINKTOBER Hard Rock CafĂ© and Tuesday on the CBS “Early Show,” performing their new single “Straight Through My Heart.” Band members Nick Carter, Howie Dorough and AJ McLean apparently aren’t showing any symptoms and have been prescribed Tamiflu as a preventative measure. The band just returned from touring in Tokyo.

Littrell released this statement via his record label: ”We were really looking forward to spending time with our closest fans and friends in NYC and take part of PINKTOBER, an unbelievable and important program. I hope we can come back soon and do everything we can to help.”

No word on the rest of their scheduled appearances.

Today's Workouts

Yes I do still run....once in awhile. Things have been a tad crazy with the new babe and the ailing wife. But I did get out on the trails for 7 miles today at lunch time. Surprisingly I saw no deer today. I did scare the heck out of some women walking her dog when I came up behind her on the trail. Other than that it was an uneventful run. Wore my new Asics Trail Attack running shoes.

The Ant and the Grasshopper


This one is a little different...
Two Different Versions! ................. Two Different Morals!

OLD VERSION: The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed.
The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Be responsible for yourself!


The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC , PBS, CNN, and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food.

America is stunned by the sharp contrast.
How can this be, that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cries when they sing, 'It's Not Easy Being Green.'

Acorn stages a demonstration in front of the ant 's house where the news stations film the group singing, 'We shall overcome.'
Rev. Jeremiah Wright then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.

Nancy Pelosi & Harry Reid exclaim in an interview with Larry King that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.

Finally, the EEOC drafts the Economic Equity & Anti-Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the Government Green Czar.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ants food while the government house he is in, which just happens to be the ant's old house, crumbles around him because he doesn't maintain it.

The ant has disappeared in the snow.

The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Be careful how you vote in 2010.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The 12th Baptism Rates a Bishop....

......or A Heathen No More

My bride, who must be an ancestor of the persistent widow in the bible (times 10), managed to weasel her way into getting one of our Bishops to come do the baptism. Bishop Holley of the Diocese of Washington DC agreed to perform the service. He has been one of our auxiliary bishops for years and he confirmed Josh 5 years ago. Bishop Holley is the 8th of 14 children from Baltimore so he probably felt some pity for us.

During her pregnancy Sam heard that there was an old Catholic tradition that the bishop would come and perform the baptism for the 12th child. And after much planning, whining, crying, conniving, blackmailing and extortion she managed to work out the details and we had Kolbe baptized this morning (Saturday) at the 280+ year-old chapel where Sam and I were married and where the other 11 kids were also baptized.

This would have to rank up there as one of the nicest baptisms we have had. The bishop was great, the kids were bathed and even had one clean and wrinkle-free clothes and it only took 8 lollipops to keep the 2 year-old quiet. He still wondered around a bit but the bishop was cool with it. Caleb (16) and Lizzie (15) were the God-parents.

Due to the c-section and the long recovery I talked Sam into agreeing to not have one of our standard 100+ people party. So we just had family members back to the house afterwards and we ordered some pizzas and had some cake. Although after putting up with our families for the day, I think both Sam and I would prefer to have friends over instead (you can pick your friends - family you are stuck with). Just kidding family. We love you and thanks for all the help the last 3 weeks.

As an added bonus Josh was given permission to come home from seminary for the weekend (first time home in 15 months). He flew down from CT on Friday afternoon and flew back this (Sunday) afternoon. We managed to get a few family photos taken while Josh was home, one of which will probably be our Christmas card unless I can find a better picture of a family of 12 on the internet.

Anyway the little fellow did great and the older kids are no longer calling him Damien or Chucky. Here are some pictures from the ceremony. The bishop would be the black guy with the red beanie on - in case you were wondering. The rest of the people are mine. A friends has posted a slideshow of pictures here.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Are you a Democrat, a Republican, or a Redneck?

Here is a little test that will help you decide.

The answer can be found by posing the following question:

You're walking down a deserted street with your wife and two small children.

Suddenly, an Islamic Terrorist with a huge knife comes around the corner, locks eyes with you, screams obscenities, praises Allah, raises the knife, and charges at you.

You are carrying a Colt Model 1911 45 cal. automatic pistol , and you are an expert shot.

You have mere seconds before he reaches you and your family.

What do you do?



Democrat's Answer :

Well, that's not enough information to answer the question!

Does the man look poor or oppressed?

Have I ever done anything to him that would inspire him to attack?

Could we run away?

What does my wife think?

What about the kids?

Could I possibly swing the gun like a club and knock the knife out of his hand?

What does the law say about
this situation?

Does the pistol have appropriate safety built into it?

Why am I carrying a loaded gun anyway, and what kind of message does this send to society and to my children?

Is it possible he'd be
happy with just killing me?

Does he definitely want to kill me, or would
he be content just to wound me?

If I were to grab his knees and hold on, could my family get away while he was stabbing me?

Should I call 9-1-1?

Why is this street so deserted?
We need to raise taxes, have paint and weed day

and make this happier, healthier street that
would discourage such behavior.
This is all so confusing!

I need to debate this with some friends

for few days and try to come to a consensus.





Redneck's Answer:

Click..... (Sounds of reloading)
BANG! Click

Daughter: 'Nice grouping, Daddy!

Were those the Winchester
Silver Tips or Hollow Points?! '

Son: 'Can I shoot the next one?!'

Wife: 'You ain't taking that to the Taxidermist!'

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The POSITIVE results of "Cash for Clunkers"

It’s taken 95% of the Obama bumper stickers off
the road...

Just How Hard is it to Pee?

What is it with you women and peeing? Everything has to be just perfect for you to go. Can’t go outside, can’t go in a porta-potty, and can’t go unless the bathroom is clean. Can’t go unless the seat is warm and scented candles are lit etc…Can’t go on demand but then when you finally have to go, get out of the way or you will be getting wetter than going over Niagara Falls.

Guys on the other hand can go anywhere anytime under and conditions. We could go on the 50-yard line of a football field during the Super Bowl. I’m pretty sure during the storming of Normandy Beach, while the bullets and bombs were flying all over the place and guys were being blown to bits, there were guys standing there on the beach going pee against the side of a blown-up tank. Even if we have gone recently we can go again. Basically we can go on demand.

What brought this up, other than the fact that I like to talk about peeing, is my bride having to give numerous urine samples over the past 2 weeks and her inability at times to go even after drinking copious amounts of fluids. She either can’t go when at the lab or she has to go so badly at home that she can’t wait until she gets to the lab. It’s all or nothing with her. Hoover Dam vs. the Mississippi river.

The Undisputed King of the Sardonic Catholic Dad Household

Normally I’m not one to gloat (Rob who are you kidding you mock the little kids when you beat them in Candyland) but you may have noticed that I haven’t posted much at all since the wee little babe was born 16 days ago. I just haven’t had time. I’m basically a slave or indentured servant around this place since the misses is laid-up. Not that I’m complaining. Waiting on that hot little minx is actually fun…especially the sponge baths.

Any who, my incredibly beautiful bride has been a posting machine (heck I would be one too if all did was lay around in bed all day nursing the baby and being waited on hand in foot by a foxy male nurse) she’s been providing daily updates on her trials and tribulations recovering from the c-section.

She was positive that she would finally have more weekly viewers than me for once. See we get a report once a week that has the average number of readers per day for that week. And I have beaten, crushed her spine into powder and used it to season my chili is more like it, for 1,000,000,000,000 weeks in a row. Ok it’s only been like a year and a half but the point is that she has never won . Not once! And low and behold the reports came out this morning and the still reigning champ is your humble servant Rob the Great, Rob the Invincible, Rob the Crusher of Pretenders to the Blogging King Crown. You would think she would know better after 20+ years of marital bliss then to mess with The Rob. Some people just take awhile for the lessons to sink in.

So I want to thank all my faithful readers, all 8 or you. You guys Rock! And this week’s checks are in the mail.