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  •        
    04 May 2010

    If all goes according to plan...
    This time tomorrow, my car should be on its way to Texas.

    [/dmc] [permanent link]


       
    Eponymous
    Eponymous
       



    About
    My Infrequently Updated Blog. The web-based journal of M. Forde, computer nerd, endurance athlete, and DeLorean owner


    contact

    Subscribe
    Subscribe to a syndicated feed of my weblog, brought to you by the wonders of RSS.

    Flavors
    There's more than one way to view this weblog; try these flavors on for size.

  • index
  • circa 1993
  • Sections

  • main
  • musings
  • running
  • DeLorean
  • code
  • unix
  • album
  • TBM
  • Archives

  • 2022
  • 2021
  • 2020
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016
  • 2015
  • 2014
  • 2013
  • 2012
  • 2011
  • 2010
  • 2009
  • 2008
  • 2007
  • Disclaimers, Copyrights, Privacy, Etc.

  • ToS
  • Copyrights
  • Links

  • olix0r.net
  • netmeister.org
  • Giraffes
  • Eat. Run. Sleep.

  •        
    24 Dec 2012

    Christmas Eve
    On Christmas Eve, I headed out around 7:00PM to take a look at the Christmas lights and decorations around town. There was a snow storm predicted for around 9:00PM, so I decided to take the DeLorean out for one last drive before the Wonderful Winter Weather(TM).

    The snow started much earlier than expected. The snow was light and slow, and despite the car not handling well in slick conditions, I kept going for a while.

    As I was driving I had the realization that I was having an experience no one else in the world has ever had. I was driving a DeLorean through my town on Christmas Eve, admiring Christmas lights and listening to Christmas music as snow fell.

    I looked over at the empty passenger seat and wished there had been someone, anyone there to share this with. So for now, until circumstances like this arise again, I will continue to be the only person to have experienced this.

    When I got home, I took this photograph.
    Snow Covered DeLorean

    [/dmc] [permanent link]

    02 Dec 2012

    Happy Birthday

    I'm starting to get used to celebrating my birthday at TBM concerts. This year it was about a week prior to my birthday at a show on December 1 held at New York's Gramercy Theatre.

    Along with the tickets, I had also purchased the "VIP package." This package included an autographed poster signed by all members of the band, a "VIP" laminate on a lanyard, and... the opportunity to meet the band prior to the show!

    You may be thinking, "But they stick around after shows and mingle with their fans anyway," and "You've already met them a few times!" Both are true. And even with this "VIP" package meet-and-greet, they still make time for all their fans after the show. What this provided was a somewhat quieter meeting in a more intimate setting.

    In fact the meeting was in a small lounge beneath the concert hall. Dim mood lighting, mirrors, and couches set the atmosphere. I spoke with Rainbow, Michael, and Nate first. Rainbow informed me his name was Michael also and made a joke about the "power of the three Mikes lighting the room." After a bit, they started moving me to Chibi who was sitting on a couch after injuring her knee during a show two nights prior. She tried to walk to me, but I told her not to. She said, "I'll meet you half way then."

    I gave her a get well card, knowing she had had surgery on her vocal chords about 8 weeks prior and recently injured her knee. Someone decided we needed a photo of that and she gave me the card back so I could give it back to her. I believe it was Owen who said, "Act natural and hold it for 30 seconds!"

    I asked Rainbow about writing "Unfamiliar" because both he and OE were given credit in the liner notes. He said it was mostly OE; OE started it and Rainbow had finished it. I said I wanted to thank them because it was a song that had taken on some greater meaning to me and I relayed a brief version of the story of the moment I recognized that. It turns out "Unfamiliar" is one of Chibi's favorite songs too.

    Every one of the bands that night were amazing. All, remarkably, were performing as duos. Creature Feature was a real fun band to see. Their music is heavily influenced by old horror movies which gives them a dark yet fun sound.

    Aesthetic Perfection put on a good performance. Their drummer is amazing and fun to watch. They heavily synth-based and while there was a dark tone to most of their songs, they still had fun and lightened things up with a Fine Young Cannibals cover.

    William Control was the only other act I had heard before the show (Thanks Last.fm!). He was great live and I'd love to see him again. He reminded me a little of Dommin in that Dean Martin meets Glen Danzig sort of way.

    The Birthday Massacre was great. They played a good mix including songs from every album. For most of the set Chibi was sitting on a speaker placed near center at the front of the stage, wearing a knee brace. She stood up and moved around occasionally, but not much. At one point Rainbow sat down on another speaker and stuck out one leg in a similar fashion to how Chibi was seated and laughed a little. It was easy to tell by their interaction here that Chibi and Rainbow are close.

    If you care (or even if you don't), their set list follows:
    • Night Shift
    • Down
    • Control
    • Always
    • Red Stars
    • Video kid
    • Lover's End
    • Forever
    • Pins and Needles
    • Happy Birthday
    • Alibis
    • Calling
    • In the Dark
    • Sleep Walking
    • Midnight
    • -- Encore --
    • Leaving Tonight
    • The Long Way Home
    • Blue


    The band did not leave the stage prior to the encore as they normally would. Chibi said, "This is the part of the show where we say thank you and leave and you clap and we come back out and play some more. But I'm not going to walk down those stairs anymore than I have to, so do you want to hear three more songs?"

    [/tbm] [permanent link]

    Happy Birthday

    I'm starting to get used to celebrating my birthday at TBM concerts. This year it was about a week prior to my birthday at a show on December 1 held at New York's Gramercy Theatre.

    Along with the tickets, I had also purchased the "VIP package." This package included an autographed poster signed by all members of the band, a "VIP" laminate on a lanyard, and... the opportunity to meet the band prior to the show!

    You may be thinking, "But they stick around after shows and mingle with their fans anyway," and "You've already met them a few times!" Both are true. And even with this "VIP" package meet-and-greet, they still make time for all their fans after the show. What this provided was a somewhat quieter meeting in a more intimate setting.

    In fact the meeting was in a small lounge beneath the concert hall. Dim mood lighting, mirrors, and couches set the atmosphere. I spoke with Rainbow, Michael, and Nate first. Rainbow informed me his name was Michael also and made a joke about the "power of the three Mikes lighting the room." After a bit, they started moving me to Chibi who was sitting on a couch after injuring her knee during a show two nights prior. She tried to walk to me, but I told her not to. She said, "I'll meet you half way then."

    I gave her a get well card, knowing she had had surgery on her vocal chords about 8 weeks prior and recently injured her knee. Someone decided we needed a photo of that and she gave me the card back so I could give it back to her. I believe it was Owen who said, "Act natural and hold it for 30 seconds!"

    I asked Rainbow about writing "Unfamiliar" because both he and OE were given credit in the liner notes. He said it was mostly OE; OE started it and Rainbow had finished it. I said I wanted to thank them because it was a song that had taken on some greater meaning to me and I relayed a brief version of the story of the moment I recognized that. It turns out "Unfamiliar" is one of Chibi's favorite songs too.

    Every one of the bands that night were amazing. All, remarkably, were performing as duos. Creature Feature was a real fun band to see. Their music is heavily influenced by old horror movies which gives them a dark yet fun sound.

    Aesthetic Perfection put on a good performance. Their drummer is amazing and fun to watch. They heavily synth-based and while there was a dark tone to most of their songs, they still had fun and lightened things up with a Fine Young Cannibals cover.

    William Control was the only other act I had heard before the show (Thanks Last.fm!). He was great live and I'd love to see him again. He reminded me a little of Dommin in that Dean Martin meets Glen Danzig sort of way.

    The Birthday Massacre was great. They played a good mix including songs from every album. For most of the set Chibi was sitting on a speaker placed near center at the front of the stage, wearing a knee brace. She stood up and moved around occasionally, but not much. At one point Rainbow sat down on another speaker and stuck out one leg in a similar fashion to how Chibi was seated and laughed a little. It was easy to tell by their interaction here that Chibi and Rainbow are close.

    If you care (or even if you don't), their set list follows:
    • Night Shift
    • Down
    • Control
    • Always
    • Red Stars
    • Video kid
    • Lover's End
    • Forever
    • Pins and Needles
    • Happy Birthday
    • Alibis
    • Calling
    • In the Dark
    • Sleep Walking
    • Midnight
    • -- Encore --
    • Leaving Tonight
    • The Long Way Home
    • Blue


    The band did not leave the stage prior to the encore as they normally would. Chibi said, "This is the part of the show where we say thank you and leave and you clap and we come back out and play some more. But I'm not going to walk down those stairs anymore than I have to, so do you want to hear three more songs?"

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    07 Oct 2012

    Signs of the Apocalypse
    A friend told me this was from Glee. I found it amusing; thought I'd share.

    It's a fact that the book of Revelations predicted Twitter. It's one of the seven signs of the apocalypse; Along with porn, unexplainable weather anomalies, martian rovers, Barney Frank, the middle east and MSNBC. It's like Kirk Cameron said, "It's never too late, until it's too late."

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    29 Aug 2012

    Migraine
    I hate waking up with migraines.

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    28 Aug 2012

    freebsd-update
    I'm attempting to update my laptop from FreeBSD 9.1-Beta1 to 9.1-RC1. The freebsd-update(8) utilitly was reporting an error finding the public key. A quick search found this thread. As per tangram's suggestion, I used

    env UNAME_r=9.0-RELEASE freebsd-update upgrade -r 9.1-RC1

    and then the update began working.

    [/unix] [permanent link]

    20 Aug 2012

    unHide
    After a friend's computer became infected with some malware that hides files in your home directory and tries to extort money from you in order to "recover" your data, I was inspired to write this little program.

    All it does is search for hidden, non-system files and unhides them. It defaults to the user's home directory (My Documents), but other directories can be chosen.

    If anyone wants to try it out, please do. If you do try it, let me know what parts I can do better. I primarily work on embedded systems and Unix daemons professionally; the user only knows my software exists when it isn't working. As such, I have very little experience with GUIs or human-computer interactions. Any feedback would be much appreciated.

    The Windows executable can be found at: http://www.skinnymf.com/~mforde/unHide/. Source code is available upon request.

    [/code] [permanent link]

    01 Jun 2012

    Fun little alias
    I use a console based RSS reader written in Ruby. It crashes often and will delete my list of feeds in the process. It also has a tendency to not fully exit, leaving a ruby process sitting in the background soaking up close to 100% CPU time. For such occasions, I've added the following alias to my .cshrc file.

    alias killraggle kill -9 '`ps ax|grep raggle|grep -v grep|awk '\''{print $1;}'\''`'

    [/unix] [permanent link]

    01 May 2012

    Volunteers Needed
    The Lincoln Park Triathlon needs volunteers. If you'd like to help out, please visit www.lincolnparktriathlon.com/volunteers for more information.

    This event isn't possible without the help of volunteers. If you or anyone you know would be interested in helping, please contact us.

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    29 Mar 2012

    Lincoln Park Triathlon


    Registration for the 2012 Lincoln Park Triathlon is now open. If anyone is interested in volunteering, please email volunteers@lincolnparktriathlon.com.

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    01 Mar 2012

    Just a Question
    Given the following code fragment, I was asked to implement foo such that the program would output "America." How would you do it?

            int main()
            {
              char *p = "Hello";
    
              foo(         );
              printf("%s",p);
    
              return 0;
            }
    

    My solution involved allocating new memory from the heap to store the new string, and changing p to point to that buffer. They didn't like that answer. They preferred the method of putting the new string in the data segment as well.

    I personally would always avoid that, whenever possible. "Hello" is stored in a read-only area of memory as is "America" in their preferred solution. Any attempt to alter those strings will trigger a segfault. This is an accident waiting to happen.

    [/code] [permanent link]

    17 Jan 2012

    Races, Races, Races
    I've been busy the last few weeks or so; I've done a few races.

    • On October 30, I ran the Marine Corps Marathon in Arlington, VA and Washington D.C.
    • On November 5, I ran the Beavertown Fall Classic 5K in my hometown.
    • On November 6, I ran the New York City Marathon for the second time.
    • On November 19, I ran the Knickerbocker 60K Ultramarathon in Central Park.
    • On December 3, I ran NJ Winter Trail Series Race #1 Half Marathon in Wayne.
    • On December 10, I ran the NYRR Jingle Bell Jog in Prospect Park.
    • On January 7, I ran the Walt Disney World Half Marathon, part one of Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge.
    • On January 8, I ran the Walt Disney World Marathon, completing the Goofy Challenge.

    In 10 weeks I ran a 5K, a 6K, two Half Marathons, three Marathons, and an Ultramarathon, plus a few training runs in there...

    And last night Wii Fit called me a couch potato.

    In defense of the game, I hadn't used it in 547 days, and I'm now 11 pounds heavier than when I had last used it. It has no way of knowing that the vast majority of that weight gain was lean mass. It also has no way of taking into account all that I've done outside the game.
    Even with that in mind, it's still a little frustrating to be called a couch potato after running a marathon and a half last weekend.

    Each of these races were pretty special. I ran MCM alongside some fairly awesome people; people who I consider to be among my closest friends. In the Beavertown 5K, I somehow managed to take 12th overall and 5th in my age group without really trying.

    At NYC and then at the Knickerbocker, I ran with the friend who got me started running in the first place. I credit him with saving my life, and it was an honor and a pleasure to run with him.

    The trail half was my first trail race (not counting my time on the high school cross country team) and I ran that with a friend I hadn't seen since our days on the high school track & field team (she was a runner, I was thrower). We have both run full marathons in less time than it took us to complete this half.

    The Jingle Bell Jog was a fun race with bells and hot cocoa, and it was the first time I ran alongside my friend and former physics TA. And lastly, I ran the Goofy Challenge alongside another one of my close friends and training partners.

    These races were a lot of fun. Some of the courses were quite amazing to see, and these races were opportunities to spend time with some pretty awesome people.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    04 Jan 2012

    Disgusted
    With the Goofy Challenge just 3 days away, I should be carb-loading. And I am. And with each bite of my lunch I hate myself more. Every time I eat, I feel fat. And every time I ingest anything that isn't ultra-lean protein or high-fiber, I disgust myself. But I sit here, shoving food down my gullet.

    [/musings/self] [permanent link]


       
    Eponymous
    Eponymous
       



    About
    My Infrequently Updated Blog. The web-based journal of M. Forde, computer nerd, endurance athlete, and DeLorean owner


    contact

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  • index
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  • Giraffes
  • Eat. Run. Sleep.

  •        
    10 Dec 2010

    Hope
    'Cause your mornings will be brighter
    Break the line and tear up rules
    Make the most of a million times "no"

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    01 Dec 2010

    FreeBSD 6.4 EoL
    As of yesterday, FreeBSD 6.4, and with it the entire 6.x branch, has reached its End-of-Life. It's time to upgrade (or maybe upgrayedd, for a double dose of something-or-other).

    So herein lies the problems. Months (years?) ago, I attempted to upgrade tak to FreeBSD 7.2. I plugged in a SATA disk into my workstation, installed the OS, reconfigured all the daemons, services, and functionalities tak has running, copied over a snapshot of all the data, and then edited the fstab to match the device names as they'd exist on tak.

    I removed the IDE root disk and installed the new SATA disk and tak and watched the kernel fail to find the root disk. Or the other SATA disk in tak.

    Based on the bug reports in the FreeBSD Gnats system, and various conversations in the mailing list, it seems Asus, who made the motherboard in tak, used a slightly non-standard SATA implementation on this particular board. Between the 6.x and 7.x line, some work had been done on the SATA drivers in FreeBSD and mad them more standards-compliant (a good thing). This, however, broke SATA on this Asus board.

    Tak is about 6 years old now, and other than some over heating issues, serves its purpose well. So do upgrade to FreeBSD 8.x on an IDE disk and replace the other SATA disk with another ATA disk, or do I build a new, lower-power, higher-performance system?

    If anyone actually reads this, feel free to use the new comments feature to give me feedback. I think it's working.

    [/unix] [permanent link]

    25 Nov 2010

    Happy Thanksgiving
    I'm thankful for my friends and the support structure they provide.
    I'm thankful for my family. While they're not always supportive* they're always accepting.
    I'm thankful for my freedom, and the men and women protect that freedom.
    I'm thankful for running, and the years it's added to my life.
    Every Thanksgiving old mike would consume 1350 calories worth of Cool Ranch Doritos for breakfast before gorging at the traditional dinner. I'm thankful old mike's dead.


    *Running 50 miles in a weekend is not "running too much."

    I felt the need to document all that I cooked today.

    • regular stuffing
    • stuffing with sausage
    • cornbread stuffing (made from corbread I baked early in the week)
    • carrots with brown sugar, clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon (bake until awesome)
    • steamed broccoli
    • asparagus sauteed with garlic and lemon juice
    • baked sweet potatoes
    • mashed sweet potatoes
    • smashed potatoes
    • zucchini with pancetta, garlic, and onion
    • beer bread (oatmeal stout)
    • stuffed mushrooms
    • baked macaroni and cheese
    • mashed turnips
    • sauteed mushrooms
    • cheese lasagna
    • meat lasagna
    • roasted turkey

    I think that's everything.

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    14 Nov 2010

    2010 New York City Marathon
    One week ago, I ran the New York City Marathon. As noted many times throughout this blog, this race was something I've been working toward since December of 2008. This event was the culmination of nearly two years of hard work and dedication. And it was worth every single mile I've run over the last two years.

    At 9:40, the cannon was fired and the marathon started. Within minutes, I was crossing the starting line and running over the Verrazano Bridge. Not only was I running in the footsteps of the current world record holder and the first American to win New York in 27 years, I was running in the footsteps of legends.

    About three and half hours later, I entered Central Park for the last few miles of the race. I looked around and had the odd sensation that I was home.

    It's difficult to put into words the feelings of that day. Despite having completed three sanctioned marathons prior to this day, crossing the finish line was something I couldn't believe I was actually doing.

    It was absolutely amazing.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    13 Nov 2010

    Pre-Race Thoughts
    Last Saturday, I sent a letter to the Giraffes mailing list. I've decided to post here.

    In March of 2008, Brian told me I was running a 5K with The Giraffes. He didn't ask and he didn't give me a choice. Two days later I got off the couch, got on the treadmill, and started running. Six weeks later I ran my first race with this team. This team saved my life that day.

    Nine months later and a hundred and one pounds lighter, I got this crazy idea in my head. I decided I was going to run a marathon. I thought, if I'm going to run a marathon, I'm going to run the biggest marathon in the world. I'm going to run the New York City Marathon.

    I did some quick research about how to get in and found the 9+1 qualifying method. A couple of days later, I told Brian I was going to spend 2009 working toward guaranteed entry for the 2010 NYC Marathon. Almost immediately, he sent out an email to The Giraffes saying, "Mike and I are doing this and so are you." I'm paraphrasing, although it was quite close to that.

    So on January 10, 2009, five of us piled into the car and drove to Central Park on a frigid Saturday morning and began our journey with the Fred Lebow Classic.

    We continued to run, and picked up some new members along the way. Some with an impressive history of ultramarathons, and some just starting out.

    Those of us who first set out that day in January reached our goal and qualified for NYC 2010.

    At some point we decided we should run a marathon prior to NY, to get an idea of what we were really getting into. We chose Philadelphia, and for several Giraffes that day, it was our first. It was the day we joined the ranks of the one tenth of one percent of the population who can call themselves marathoners.

    While training for Philly, I fell in with a group of runners from my hometown and began running with them. At first it was short runs during a 5K training program they were running, but soon thereafter, they began including me in their longer training runs on the weekends. They introduced me to a number of other runners. Eventually I convinced (most of) them to sign up for the Giraffes mailing list.

    For the past two years, I've run with these people, the original Giraffes and the runners who have joined us along the way. And through it all, this team is what has kept me going. Through inspiration, through motivation, through friendships, through training runs and races, you've kept me going. You have been my support system.

    And now I sit here on the eve of the New York City Marathon, less than 24 hours from the start of the race, less than 24 hours from realizing our goal we set for ourselves so long ago.

    To all of you who have been with me for this journey in some way, shape or form... To those who got the team started and pulled me in, to those who saved my life... To those who persevered through qualifying races under grueling weather conditions with me... To those who got food poisoning with me from Macaroni Grill the night before the Scotland Run 10K... To those who got me through the last 5K of Philly... To those who made the 22+ mile training runs a little more bearable at the end... To those who have shown their support in any way they could...

    I offer you my eternal gratitude. I would not be where I am today without all of you. I love you all.

    One final note. To those of you joining me in tomorrow's running of the New York City Marathon... Kick ass and chew bubble gum.

    --
    M. Forde
    "Running never takes more than it gives back."

    [/running] [permanent link]

    30 Oct 2010

    It's been a while...
    I haven't updated this blog in quite some time. A lot has happened since the last post.

    First and foremost, I spent about two months volunteering as the Cross Country team's coach for the local Middle School. Due to budget cuts, all athletics programs were cut. The local Police Athletic League stepped up and volunteered to take over the programs. Many of the teachers who have coached in previous years did not want to do so now, so the PAL went looking for volunteers within the community.

    A friend of mine with whom I train put me in contact with the PAL and after an application and vetting process, I became a Rutgers Certified coach and began my duties.

    The team was relatively small, seventeen boys and six girls. Having never really worked with kids before, I was glad that this year's team was half the size of last year's; however I was still apprehensive about working twenty-three middle-schoolers. Thankfully, several parents helped me throughout the season. One in particular was there with me for almost every practice and every meet.

    I tried to emulate the aspects of my middle and high school coaches that I thought worked, and tried different approaches in an attempt to avoid the aspects I had never liked. I wanted to motivate and inspire these kids.

    I told them about my history as a runner: my experience in 8th, 9th, and 10th grade, my first 53-minute 5K on the treadmill in March of 2008, my marathons, my personal records, and my improvements over the last two years. I told them I would never make them do any thing I wouldn't do myself in training. And I ran with them. Whether the day's training was 100 and 200 meter repeats, running the course, "time on feet" running, or fartlek's, I ran along side them.

    During one session I was catching up to the lead group, the fastest of the 7th and 8th graders, and asked, "Are you really going to let an old man with bruised ribs keep up with you?" One of them turned and said, without breaking pace, "You're not that old and you run marathons."

    During the Cross Country season, in the last six weeks or so I've run a few races and set a few PRs. On September 19, I ran the Marathon Tune-Up 18 mile in Central Park. I set a new 18-mile PR at 2:27:34, taking 18:56 off my time from last year. Also of note, I didn't end up in medical being treated for hypothermia this year.

    The following week I ran the 5th Ave Mile. I shaved 9 seconds off from last year's race and 3 seconds off my previous best in training. My new mile PR is 5:25.

    About 2 weeks later I ran the Hartford Marathon. My friend and I got there very late the night before the race. Because we were stuck in traffic for about four and a half hours, my friend missed the on-site registration. He debated what to do while we went to dinner at a local tavern. I promptly felt sick after eating.

    The next morning we got and got ready to run. I still felt sick from the night before and threw up the previous night's meal shortly before we went to the registration packet pickup. I got my bib and timing chip and my friend failed to convince the race officials to let him enter. When he asked, "can I run unsanctioned?" the response of the somewhat sympathetic official was, "I can't tell you that you can." So my friend decided to run unsanctioned. After all, no one said he couldn't.

    We lined up in the corral. Despite the way I felt, I knew I had to go out there and run my best marathon. I had told the Cross Country team what Prefontaine had said, "To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift." I had to go out there and try to PR. But as Yoda said, "Do or do not; there is no try."

    I started the race keeping the 3:45 pace group in my sights. My friend kept along side me for the first three miles then fell back a bit. I had some conversations with two runners in the pace group, Gavasker, the pacer, and Jen, a woman who was looking to BQ. I kept with them the whole way and finished in 3:43:32.

    Unbeknownst to me at the time, my friend dropped out at mile 8 and made his way back to the start/finish area. He was there at the finish line, waiting for me as I crossed the line just ahead of Jen who BQ'd with 2 minutes to spare.

    The next morning I went out with some other friends and ended up running another 24 miles putting me at 50 miles for the weekend. Monday evening I ran in a charity 5K with another friend, and then took a few days off.

    Since then, the Cross Country season has ended. They had their last meet, a few more days of practice, and then this past Wednesday they had team photos followed by an end-of-season pizza party.

    At the party the kids presented me with a plaque to say "thank you." I damn near cried when I unwrapped it and saw the photo taken at one of our practices. But if anyone asks, I'll deny that part.

    Plaque

    The 6th and 7th graders also asked me to come back and coach next year. During and since the season, I've run across some of the kids in town. Every time, they come up to me and say, "Hey coach!" And that means the world to me. It makes me think I've succeeded, that there's a possibility I've inspired them to keep running. Hopefully they'll love running as much as I do, if not more.

    I've encouraged the kids to enter our town's annual 5K next weekend and several of them have signed up. I'm looking forward to running with them again.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    31 Jul 2010

    If my calculations are correct...
    Over the course of the last two years and four months, I've changed considerably both mentally and physically. I lost 108lbs and then put on 6 while marathon training. This 6lbs was purely lean mass (muscle, bone density) and I'm now at about 6% body fat.

    Running is known to increase bone density, and the various forms of exercise I use in my training increased my muscle mass as well throughout this transformation. I've been curious to know just how much fat I lost.

    If my calculations are correct, throughout this process I lost 123.96 pounds of fat and gained 21.96 pounds of bone and muscle resulting in my current net loss of 102lbs.

    Why is this filed under the Running section? Because running was what enabled this transformation to happen.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    26 Jul 2010

    Damn, it feels good to be a gangsta..
    After I finished my run tonight, still in my soaked running gear, I walked directly to local grocery store for chocolate syrup and had the following conversation with the woman at the check out counter.

    her: Over ice cream or chocolate milk.
    me: Chocolate milk.
    her: Nothing hits the spot like a cold glass of chocolate milk.
    me: Especially after a long run.
    her: How far did you run tonight?
    me: Half marathon. My third in three days.
    her: God bless you. God bless you.

    Then, as I walked away she said, "Nice legs."
    "Thanks. I've worked hard for those."

    [/running] [permanent link]

    04 May 2010

    If all goes according to plan...
    This time tomorrow, my car should be on its way to Texas.

    [/dmc] [permanent link]

    02 May 2010

    2010 New Jersey Marathon
    I was registered for today's NJ Marathon in Long Branch. I lost a few weeks in training due to some IT-band issues, and earlier this week was stricken with a bout of bronchitis.

    I got down there today, and 30 minutes before the race start I did a quick quarter mile and decided I wasn't over the bronchitis enough to run a marathon today. It was difficult for me to be there as the race started, watching my chance at reaching my goals disappear. As the morning went on and clouds disappeared and the temperature rose, my thoughts changed.

    Not running today was probably the best and hardest decision I've made in a while. Often the right choices in life are not the easiest to choose, no matter the circumstances.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    26 Mar 2010

    Powergrabs
    Yay Socialism!
    That was sarcasm. Socialism is bad news. It leads to the government controlling every aspect of your lives. Take for example this story or a bit closer to home, this story.

    [/politics] [permanent link]

    22 Mar 2010

    2010 NYC Half Marathon
    Yesterday was my best half marathon yet. As I stood in the corral waiting for the race to start, the chill in the air was a welcome change from the heat and humidity of last year's race. The decision to move the race from August to March was a good one. The course is definitely a fun one. It starts with an 8 mile loop around Central Park before exiting onto 7th Avenue. From there, the route goes to 42nd street, through Times Square, and out to the West Side Highway where the course finishes near Battery Park.

    I started out with the goal of beating my time from last year. As long as I did better than 1:51:49, I'd be happy. I was hoping I'd finish within a minute or two of the half marathon PR I set back in January, but I wasn't counting on it.

    As I ran I looked at the split times, and roughly gauged how I was doing, trying to stay on target for something close to 1:37 finish, but primarily making sure I was doing better than last year's 1:51. At mile 8, just before exiting Central Park to head to Times Square, the clock time was about 59 minutes. I realized that the winner of the race was about to finish, if he hadn't already, and I hadn't even made it out of the park.

    This year's splits were much better than last year's.

    split20092010
    5K0:23:420:23:22
    10K0:47:320:46:09
    15K1:14:451:07:59
    20K1:46:091:29:28
    final1:51:491:33:26


    This is the first time I've run negative splits. What really amazes me is that not only was the second half faster, but every 5K split was faster than the previous. There was an excitement exiting the park. There was an amazing rush turning the corner onto 42nd street. The crowds were great, cheering every runner as we passed by.I remember around the mile 11 marker realizing I had a chance to PR, estimating my time at about 1:36, and picking up the pace a bit. I started passing people left and right. One runner saw me and yelled, "Go, man! Go!"

    Out of about 15 to 16 thousand people that signed up, 11,493 finished. I finished in 895th place; far, far, behind the winner who took home $20,000.

    Universal Sports had a live telecast of the event. I set the DVR to record it before I left, but I haven't had a chance to watch it yet. It likely focused primarily on the professionals who ran, including the Marathon world record holder, Haile Gebrselassie.

    This was a great race on a great day.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    12 Mar 2010

    Not a Paper Cup
    I recently ordered the Not a Paper Cup from ThinkGeek. It looks like a paper coffee cup but is made of ceramic. The lid is silicone instead #6 plastic. It should be awesome. It's not.

    Advertised as 12 ounces, it actually only holds 8 ounces. Right there, it's at most 66% as awesome as it should be. As one friend put it, "That is significantly less awesome."

    Now that I've used it I'll say that it's about 0% awesome and 90% suck with 10% fail.

    The silicone lid tastes, well, like silicone. It adds this horrible flavor to every sip. I like my coffee to have a strong coffee flavor, not a strong coffee plus silicone flavor. Maybe that's just me...

    The double walled construction of the cup, in theory would add an insulating layer to keep the coffee warm longer than a regular paper cup. This was not the case and in a test yesterday, I found that the standard paper cup kept the coffee warm for about an hour and a half longer than the Not a Paper Cup.

    In summary:

    • Holds 8 ounces instead of 12 (as advertised).
    • Silicone lid adds odd and horrible taste to coffee.
    • Doesn't keep the coffee hot as long as regular paper cups.


    • Don't buy one. If some one gifts it to you, well then that person must hate you or not understand coffee.

      [/musings] [permanent link]

    Coogan's 5K - Update
    Officially I ran my best 5K to date. I finished in 19:41 averaging 6:20 per mile.

    It was a rather hilly course, starting at 173rd and running up to the Cloisters. After circling the museum, the same route was taken back to 173rd.

    On Saturday I said I was going to PR. I was told that was a bit a of a lofty goal given how hilly the course was. Sunday morning I woke up with a bit of discomfort after gorging on sushi the night before and thought I might not do well.

    As I stood in the corral, those feelings changed. I knew I was going to PR. And I did.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    07 Mar 2010

    Coogan's 5K
    Unofficially I just PR'd at 19:44.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    02 Mar 2010

    1267567528
    6790 test.

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    [/mobile] [permanent link]

    21 Feb 2010

    Run for Haiti
    Yesterday I posted on the mobile section that I had finished the race coming in number 256 of 8704. The statistics have been updated and I need to post a correction. I finished number 266 of 9421 at a time of 27:17.

    This was of course about a minute slower than the Grid Iron classic where I PR'd, but I finished in the top 2.8% this time.

    Yesterday's race raised over $400,000 for the relief effort in Haiti, with over 10,000 people registering and making donations.

    Yesterday's race was also the first time I had run in a week. Last Saturday (February 13) I ran 31.73 miles. With the upcoming race schedule and training for the New Jersey and Pocono Marathons in May, I figured it would be best to actually rest.

    It felt good to run again. I missed it.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    20 Feb 2010

    1266681322
    256/8704. Not a PR time, but not a bad showing.

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    [/mobile] [permanent link]

    07 Feb 2010

    1265591788
    Game's over! The Who just won!

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    [/mobile] [permanent link]

    04 Feb 2010

    A couple of things....
    First, am I the only one who gets freaked out when seeing a Toyota in my rear-view mirror?

    Second, google calculator has failed me. I keep trying to do conversions using Joules and it keeps giving me search results for physics forums with no calculator results. WTF google? WTF?

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    02 Feb 2010

    On sunday I ran...
    27.22 miles because I felt like it.

    I woke up Sunday morning, ran some errands, and then met a friend for a run. While I was waiting for him, I ran a one mile warm-up. Then he and I set out and ran a half marathon.

    I felt pretty good afterward, so a little while later I set out to do another 10K. That 10K turned into an 8.4 mile hill work out.

    I realized I was only about four miles shy of a marathon at that point and I still felt really good. After a short break I went out one more time. Four and a half miles later, I was back home and had logged the most miles in a single day that I had ever done, breaking my previous record by a mile.

    It felt absolutely amazing.

    Can every body feel like I do? Can't you can't you trip like I do?

    [/running] [permanent link]

    31 Jan 2010

    It's gotta be the shoes
    Yesterday I picked up the pair of shoes in which I will run the New York City Marathon.

    [/running] [permanent link]

    24 Jan 2010

    1264352606
    1:37:50. New half marathon PR.

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    [/mobile] [permanent link]

    10 Jan 2010

    Avatar
    Here's my review of the movie.

    There's something about the giraffes if you believe we're apples and oranges. I was disappointed by the ketchup, but the mustard was surprisingly good.

    [/musings] [permanent link]

    09 Jan 2010

    1263048598
    Qualifier #1 done.

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    [/mobile] [permanent link]

    07 Jan 2010

    I Hate People
    http://www.wpix.com/news/wpix-dog-beaten-in-elevator,0,193301.story

    I saw that on the news last night and it made me sick. There is no reason for this. This is just senseless abuse.

    It'd be nice to see him in prison getting kicked around his cell by another inmate, but that likely won't happen. Under the current laws, he can only be charged with a misdemeanor.

    Haven't there been studies indicating a correlation between abusing animals and becoming a serial killer?

    [/musings] [permanent link]