Monthly Archives: January 2008

Plans for the Future

So, I have a conundrum….

I had this big, grandiose running plan last year, complete with a marathon in March down in KC MO (actually Olathe, but that’s like saying Minneapolis and really meaning New Hope. Same thing except to those who live there…), complete with a plan on getting a tattoo, and plans to marathon every few months until I hit All Fifty States, God Bless, Amen, Hallalujah!

And then I just sort of quit. It started with a series of trips out of town. When I’m by myself, I can plan and do all sorts of stuff. But I hate confronting people, especially when it’s people that I like, and that I’m related to. I’d rather just not go with my plans than upset theirs in the least. I’m a big puss, in other words.

After that, instead of simply getting back on track, I just sort of let it go. And why? I was really excited! I only got off track a little bit! But somehow that little bit seemed so much bigger. Suddenly my plans weren’t perfect, so I couldn’t follow through. I had to give it up.

One of my problems is that, along with being non-confrontational, I don’t really like people. I mean I like people, but I don’t really like being close to people. My best friends on Earth are people that, besides my Wife and her family, I haven’t seen for months at a time. One of my best friends, who happens to live about 20 minutes from me, I haven’t actually seen in 6 months. It’s really pitiful.

And due in part to that, I have no positive peer pressure in my life.

My wife, well, she lets me do whatever I want. Within reason. (and within the rules of our respective Religions), I get pretty free rein over my life. And she has the same free rein over hers. We don’t go crazy-go-nuts in this relationship, but we do live fairly free in that respect. We’re dependent on one another, but we’ve both been very independent in the past, and the semi-independence still exists to this day.

Well, rounding this set of tracks back in the direction of “What’s the Point-ville”, my point is…maybe I’ve been too hard on myself in the past, or maybe others haven’t been hard enough on me. I’m taking this marathon training a lot easier this time, but I also want to build up a support base to really wag a finger at me when I stray.

For my part, instead of running 3-4 times a week and really pushing to increase my times every single time, I’m only going to start by running at the minimum 2 days a week, and really “running” is relative. I can walk, jog, or run. I will mainly start running when I get really sick of how long it takes to walk 5 or 6 miles. When I can crank that out in only one hour instead of two, that’s when I’ll start really trying to book it. As far as times…who cares? I’ll allott enough time to complete the running, after work hours. And at only 2-3 times a week, it won’t be that much of a crunch.

I’m doing the Scott Adams method, which on the surface seems half-assed, but you really have to read his blog post to get it. http://dilbertblog.typepad.com/the_dilbert_blog/2007/06/golden_happines.html. When I was deciding shortly before the new year whether I really wanted to run that marathon or not, I went back to this post, laughed, and decided what the hell. I’d go for it again, and keep the sweating to the actual running itself instead of the prep-work I was doing. If I missed a few days, oh well. If I missed a week, repeat the week, and go slower so I don’t kill myself in the process. I’d just get out and go.

So I am. And I’m not planning too far ahead. I have a rough outline of how far I want to run every week for the next 6 months, but I’m not going to post it here. I’ll just sort of play it by ear. I think it might work.

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2.1 Mile Jog

Ran on the treadmill for 2.1 tonight. Cramped up a little bit, so I’m going to really hydrate this week.

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1.9 Jog

Ran on a treadmill. Since this was the first run for the week, I weighed in, at 238 (with shoes, clothes on) on a real doctor’s-type scale. So in reality it would be about 234-235, but I’m counting the 238, what the heck. When I’m in the 2-teens again it won’t matter so much.

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New Rule: No Make-Up Runs

I don’t do make-up runs anymore. I can’t do it, it’s too freaking depressing. I have to move forward if I’m going to do this at all, can’t look back if I miss a day. If I miss my run-day, I miss it. If I have the time and the inclination, I have the “option” of doing the next run the next day, if it’s free. Otherwise, forget it. No lumping runs together. If it’s gone, it’s gone.

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1.1 Walk

I’m jumping ahead here, shortening my pre-Marathon training by quite a skip. I’ll be training for real by mid-February.

Walk: 1.1 Miles (Eliptical Trainer)

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Return of the Run

Well, I’m rebooting my Run-blog, with a different URL: http://aaa-run.blogspot.com/. It’s a very slow restart, with walks before runs. I need to re-establish the habits of going out first. The bar I’ve set for myself is really low, so I should be able to surpass it.

I don’t know about you, but doing something like this, when you have a fairly young marriage to someone whose schedule differs so much from your own, it kind of sucks. That was probably the largest excuse I had for stopping my runs, eventually giving up in the month of September. That, and really, who but a real total health nut goes running on a Cruise Ship? Well, it should have been me.

I hope I have the courage to get involved in some local Run Club. I don’t generally like clubs, and I don’t like being the New Guy. It puts a spotlight on Me, and I don’t care for that one bit. I may have to do it though, if I have any hope of getting a Marathon under my belt, let alone Fifty.

I always think back to the brave guys being held prisoner during the Korean War. It was some of the roughest conditions ever faced by American soldiers. In the end, the ones who lived were the ones who had a buddy. If I were there, I’m so antisocial that I’d probably be one of the first to die off. I hate to say it, but it’s true.

It’s a major hurdle to get past. It’s not easy for me, but that may be the only way I can accomplish this.

We’ll see what happens.

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Reboot

Well, I failed. I got off course, putting off runs as trips out of town took over for a time, and I just sort of gave up. It isn’t the first time, but I’m going to try it again. I’ll try to get involved with a local running group for some kind of group support. I’ve never been good with getting involved with groups, for eventually the groups tend to annoy me to the point that I reject the group, reject what they have to say, and strike out on my own, to my own demise. It’s a repeating circuit.

On Sunday 1/13, I walked for 1 mile. I will increase my weekly mileage by 10% or more every week. So although this post is on a Tuesday, I’ll create another post, back-dating it a few days. Wish me luck.

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Five Dangerous Things You Should Let Your Kid Do

This is an interesting clip from Gever Tulley, author of Fifty Dangerous Things You Should Let Your Kid Do. It’s an interesting clip, available at my other blog: http://bestofomaha.blogspot.com/2008/01/vid-z.html

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1 Mile

1 Mile Walk – Walnut Creek (very cold)

Miles For The Week: 1 Mile
Goal for Next Week: 1 Mile + 10% = 1.1 Miles
Goal for the Month: 1 Mile + 1.1 Miles + 1.3 Miles = 3.4 Miles by Jan 31.

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Screw The Classics

Yes, that’s what I said! SCREW THE CLASSICS!

I came to a realization this week while I was sick with a 100.5 fever and cursed with a much-too-aggressive metabolism. For one thing, I had no desire to blog. I just wanted to wallow and watch classic movies. And for a two thing, I don’t really like classic movies. But I like to watch them, and bash them.

This week, I watched Ben Hur, Easy Rider, and Five Easy Pieces. All three of these would-be classics are losers.

Let’s start with Ben Hur. Why did these Hollywood studios put people through a 10 minute “overture” before their movies? Did people actually like going to the movies, sitting through previews, and then watching a static, non-moving screen for 10 minutes while listening to the same music you’re going to be listening to for the next three hours? And once the movie started, just how many scenes of people walking, and walking, and walking, and walking, and FREAKING WALKING DOES ONE MOVIE REQUIRE?!?! Wow, you could cut the movie down to two hours EASY, No Joke, just by cutting out 3/4 of the walking scenes! And I’m dead serious. I was doing the calculations as I was fast-forwarding through the dialog-free walking scenes.

Yes, I fast-forwarded. Do you really expect me to sit through all of those scenes? I mean, the slave-train walking scenes were at least mildly interesting, as I was rooting against the slaves. When that guy fell over, they stopped the train, and kicked the exhausted slave down the dune to his ultimate demise? Pure GOLD. I wish they would have done the same with the editors of this movie, because they obviously didn’t do a very good job. Same Movie, Half the Length fellas.

And then the Chariot Race. An unequaled Ancient Roman action scene until 2000’s Gladiator. But did it “mean” anything? At the time, Judah Ben-Hur didn’t know his mother and sister were alive, so he wasn’t racing to find out about them. Also, Judah also had pretty good standing in Rome, so he wasn’t doing it to win “freedom” or anything along those lines. No, it was a petty squable with his old friend-turned-enemy, something that Judah, the entire movie, kept saying “Oh, geez, I’m above all that nonsense, that petty violence, unless it has purpose.”

And that purpose was only, apparently, moving the plot along.

The saving grace of Ben-Hur was, litereally, the saving grace of Jesus. The very few scenes dealing with Christ were, all-in-all, pretty good, in a 1950’s Christmas-y kind of way. A little schmaltzy, but come on, it’s Jesus. He cures the sick, reunites families, and even gives a poor guy a drink of water. You can’t beat Jesus, and you shouldn’t try, because he’ll only come back in a few days much stronger than he was before.

Someday I’d like to re-edit Ben-Hur. I’d add new CGI effect shots of the armada battles (like they did with the episodes of classic Star Trek), cut out 3/4 of the walking scenes. I bet I could cut it to 150 minutes easy.


Easy Rider…well, it makes for a good music video, intermixed with rantings of a drugged-out Dennis Hopper (scenes which feel a little too real sometimes), and winding down with some bad-trip montage that lasts about 5 minutes too long. (Yeah, I fast forwarded through it.) And like Hamlet, EVERYBODY DIES!!! Ha ha, I gave it away! It’s only been out for 40 years, loser! You should have watched it before now!

Five Easy Pieces…I just didn’t care about anyone in this movie. Not even Jack. I mean, the knocked-up waitress I kind of felt sorry for, but everyone else, Nah. I fast-forwarded through this one too. Way too preachy, like a college theatre project gone bad.

This weekend, I’m probably going to watch a couple more “classics”. I’ve got about 6 or 7 more queued up in my Tivo. Or I’ll watch an episode of classic Star Trek. I weigh the two equally these days, which should tell you a bit about my mentality.

I like me some candy. Gimme some candy.

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New Junk Blog

Well, I dusted off an old URL that I’ve still got and I’m going to use it as my new junkblog. bestofomaha.blogspot.com

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Scotish Sobriety Test

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Mythbusters that won’t show in the U.S.

“Do Pretty Girls Fart?”

This was an actual episode segment that, to date, has not shown in the U.S.

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15 Minutes or It’s Free (Junk/Punk Song)

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You Shrunk My Honda, You Bitch!

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Weird backwards type character

This is a strange thing I found out on the internets. Insert this character (which I’ll paste below) into any document (even Notepad), and it reverses everything you type. I assume this is mainly for Asian fonts, so that they can type correctly right-to-left. Kind of cool.

‫‬‭‮‪‫‬‭‮҉For example…

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Thought

I like helping people. And I really like when they appreciate it. And I like nice people much more than angry people. It’s strange how that works out.

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Cars!

Nothing much to say, just that we might be snagging a 2004 Pontiac Aztek. Not sure yet, but we’ll be finding out rather soon. Cheers.

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Blunderskite

So, I’m watching the preview & behind-the-scenes for Terminator: Sarah Conner Chronicles, which I wouldn’t do except that my Tivo practically spoon-fed the two gimme’s to me, politely asking if I wanted to do a season-pass for the show. I’m watching, expecting to be horribly disappointed, but instead I’m pleasantly surprised. This looks good. Maybe not Terminator 2 good, but good nonetheless. And then I’m watching, and who should appear? Summer Glau, who played River Tam on Firefly and Serenity. A very talented martial artist (at least on film, in real life she’s a ballerina) who should prove to be a very solid good Terminator in the course of this series.

Smirking with my limited (cautious) hopes for this series, I was taking my shower, getting ready for my last Christmas in Sioux Falls tomorrow, when it occurred to me (and not for the first time) that we’re sort of stuck. Time-wise. And it’s something that doesn’t bother me much.

See, around 1992, there was a clip on MTV News about a guy who organized this tiny coalition with a clever sounding name: The Organization for the Advancement of Time. Or something like that. You could always rename it Org for the Updating of Time, but then you’d be out and that sounds a little gay.

The point was that the guy thought we were just stuck in a layover of the 1980’s, entertainment-wise. Which we were. There was no clear identity for the 1990’s yet. Except maybe for the Spin Doctors and C+C Music Factory. There wasn’t much of a true “1990s” image.

And then there came Gangsta Rap and Grunge, and things weren’t the same from then out. But you can see what I’m trying to piece together in this fragmented narrative. We’re stuck, not in the 1990’s, but in the 1980’s. And earlier. And it’s not such a bad thing.

Maybe it’s because I’m in my 30’s. I really liked the 1980’s and 1990’s. I can look back with rose-colored glasses because I can latch onto the almost euphoric highs I felt when hearing a certain song on the radio and having it latch onto me personally. Or watching a movie like The Terminator on cable 10 or 20 times over the course of a summer.

One of the things I’m trying to say is that, as far as recycling ideas, we live in an amazing age. We’re taking these ideas and just continuing on, into infinitem. You have the afore-mentioned Terminator series returning. You have the rebirth of the Superman Franchise, apparently taking off from where Superman 2 ended. You have James Bond almost going back to the shoot-first feel of the very first one (or just ripping off Jason Bourne if you lean that way). What I find most amazing though is the flow of Punk Rock.

Punk has existed in some form or another since either the late 1960s or early 1970s, depending on Who you ask. (get it?) Going through the 1970s melding and forming process, it ended up with a form, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, that it’s pretty close to being today. Sure, you can throw Grunge into the mix as a kind of metal-punk, but when you break it down, many of the tracks from so-called Grunge artists are really just Punk songs.

How can you explain this? Punk is anti-establishment, underground, and yet besides Jazz and Classical, it might be the form of popular music that has existed the longest yet has remained largely unchanged. And it’s more popular today than Jazz and Classical combined, at least in this country. If you doubt it, look at record sales of the last half-century of Punk and Grunge artists and compare them to Jazz and Classical artists.

By the way, I haven’t checked these facts myself, so to this point I’m completely talking out of my ass. But I had you going, and I would bet you won’t be checking these figures out yourself.

Anyhow, here’s my post for today, yippee, I’m still on a roll. I might have to sneak away for a few minutes tomorrow to post on someone’s computer tomorrow, as I’ll be out of town and this laptop ain’t coming with. Have a good one, and Merry Christmas again.

Oh, and look for some other stuff filtering in on the archives. I’m finally getting around to moving the stuff from kraznoy2.blogspot.com over here.

(This is a random fragment that went no where, but I don’t have the heart to delete it now…)
, and because all efforts to come out with new music and shows seem to fail, with few exceptions. DC-comics movies are back on top again, with darker versions of what Marvel is putting out. Which I guess you could call it a do-over of the 1980’s, except that what few movies and shows Marvel put out mostly sucked. Except for the Hulk. That was cool.

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Forgive the Language

My thoughts exactly.

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Great Cover of Neil Young’s "Old Man"

This is Kyrie Song, you’ll be hearing more from her I bet.

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Two Albums, Which Is Better?

Okay, you have U2’s “Joshua Tree”, and you have U2’s “Achtung Baby!”. Which is better?

Simple argument. While everyone always seems to say “Josh” is more classic, with “Where the Streets Have No Name”, and “I Still Haven’t Found…”, which album can you listen to from beginning to end, with no song faltering to the point of needing to skip past? That would be “Achtung”, baby. Besides, song of the last millenium? “One”, hands down. ‘Nuff Said.

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One A Day Multi-Blogavin! It’s Tasty Too!

Here’s another experiment. It’s not original, and I’ve tried it before. One post a day. It has to contain text. No other requirements necessary.

So…I went to Juno last night, and that’s how my wife & I celebrated New Year’s. Now, Juno is a great movie. I haven’t heard my wife laugh so much during one movie in my life. It’s a must-see, in the theater, sit your butt down and watch it movie. It’s that good. When you can get laughs from inside an abortion clinic, that’s something. Especially from a couple of pro-lifers like my wife & I.

Now, you might say, after seeing it, that it’s almost too witty for its own good. And it is. Some of the one-liners don’t seem to fit the characters 100%. But the lines are too funny, and you soon overlook the negatives. Or at least I did. Just watch it, discuss, and have a good new year!

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