Herndon Turkey Trot

This past weekend was pretty busy.  (And I’m feeling much better, thank you.)  I need to stop scheduling one thing right after another, though.  I hate feeling like I’m always running late.  I could just get up and get started earlier, but then I wouldn’t enjoy my weekends at all.

Saturday turned out to be windy and FREEZING.  I went out to Toys R Us to buy Colin a birthday present and I could barely stand to dash from the car to the store.  By the time I got back, John and I had just enough time to eat a quick lunch before we had to change for the race.  Speaking of lunch, though, we had the BEST sandwiches.  I got them from Spicy Pickle, on Waxpool, and they were SO good.  We both got the Englishman (roast beef, horseradish cole slaw, thousand island dressing, and cheddar (I substituted provolone)).  Yum!  Anyway, we stopped by Christina and Will’s place on our way to the race so we could at least make an appearance at Colin’s birthday party, wish him a happy 1st birthday, and drop off our present.  I wish we could have stayed, but again, that’s what I get for overscheduling our weekends.  Although it’s really not my fault that Colin’s birthday happened to be the same weekend as the Herndon Turkey Trot.  And I had already registered us for the race when I found out about the birthday party.  But that’s not the point.  We got there and found the apartment crawling with toddlers!  🙂  Wendy and Eric were there with their two boys, Will’s brother and his wife were there with their two boys, Will’s mom was there (with no additional children in tow), and of course Colin was crawling around all over the place.  In the last week, he’s added a new facial expression to his arsenal of adorable tricks.  He didn’t do a lot of smiling while we were there, but he scowled!  So cute.  He furrowed his eyebrows and glared at us.  Just the cutest thing.  Hopefully Christina has pictures of him doing it.  We left after about 5 minutes so we could get to Herndon for the race.

John and I participated in this race last year (he ran and did very well, and I walked it with Jess, gabbing the whole time), and I think there were more people last year than this year.  Maybe the awful weather scared them off.  There were still a lot of people, though.  The wind died down some.  Well, it was still blowing, but it wasn’t constant.  Gusty, I suppose.

The race itself was just okay.  We found Manpreet and Doreen (from work) in the crowd at the start of the race.  Manpreet has been running a lot (she runs in the Army Ten-Miler every year), and Doreen was planning on trying to keep up with her.  As usual, I didn’t see John once the race started.  Actually, that’s not true.  This race starts with everyone running down a road in one direction and then making a 180-degree turn and running back down the same road.  So I did see him after the race started, since he doubled back way before I did.  I started with Manpreet and Doreen right behind me.  The crowd took forever to thin out.  It was like a bottleneck for much of the first mile.  I don’t know exactly how long it stayed crowded ’cause I never saw the first mile marker.  Which was annoying.  I didn’t get any sense of how much further I had to go until the end of the second mile, when I saw the marker and heard some volunteer calling out the time.  It was 19:55 when I passed the marker, and I was really annoyed ’cause that pretty much meant I wasn’t going to beat 30 minutes this time.  And John (sweetheart that he is) told me that at this point I should be ashamed of myself if I don’t break 30 minutes in a 5K.  I decided I could always use the fact that I had just been diagnosed with bronchitis as an excuse.  I kept recognizing landmarks along the course from last year, but without any sense of how far along I was.  That is seriously frustrating.  And just when I’d feel warmed up, the wind would sweep around a corner and cut through all of my layers.  And then, in the third mile, I started to feel a stitch in my right side.  I really wanted to walk, but I hadn’t seen Doreen or Manpreet pass me and I REALLY wanted to beat them.  I wasn’t expecting to (in fact, every time I felt someone at my shoulder, coming up to pass me, I thought it was them), but I really wanted to beat someone I know in a race.  Since I can’t beat John.  🙂  I knew they would definitely pass me if I started walking.  So I managed to keep my feet moving.  Breathing wasn’t really an issue, but the cold was really wearing me down and that stitch in my side was threatening to knock me down.  I made it to the last leg of the race (the last tenth?  I don’t know – never saw the three-mile marker either) and I had nothing in reserve.  I couldn’t pick up my pace at all.  I was trudging towards the finish line.  John said I was scowling just like Colin.  The finish line clock said 29:51, 29:52, 29:53, and I somehow found enough energy to pick up my pace just enough to cross the line around 29:27 or something.  I can’t find the official time.  I don’t know if the times haven’t been posted or if I just can’t find them.  I’m pretty sure that I finished officially under 30 min, so I don’t have to be ashamed of myself. 🙂  And I can still use the bronchitis excuse.

I found Manpreet and Doreen after the race.  Doreen said she couldn’t keep up with Manpreet, and Manpreet said she was behind me.  She identified me by my scarf, which was apparently flapping behind me in the wind.  So I beat them!  Hooray for me!

Oh, I forgot to mention that I was wearing just about the most garish combination of colors I could find in my closet.  Not on purpose exactly.  I mean I was aware that what I was wearing was just about as ugly a color combination that you can imagine, but that wasn’t my goal.  I wore my bright red running pants, my nice autumn gold long sleeve t-shirt from the Purcellville race, and a turquoise sweatshirt.  And my purple running shoes.  It was terrible.  I think Manpreet was being nice when she said she identified me by my scarf.  She probably meant she saw my awful clashing outfit and knew immediately that it was me.

Last thing about this race.  We didn’t feel good about it.  I mean, when John and I finished the last 5K, we both felt great.  It was a good race, we’d done well, we were exhilarated.  We felt good.  This one, though…it was cold, it was hard – it hurt and there was no satisfying feeling when it was over.  Neither of us really felt like we had done a good job.  So that kinda sucked.  But it was over and we had other things to do that evening.  And I will go into those other things next time.  This post is long enough.

I really like That 70s Show.

So I was just about to head for bed when I realized I haven’t posted today.  It’s not the end of the world if I don’t post every day, but I think it’s too early in the life of my blog to start skipping days.  I should be so disciplined about my running.  Of course, I can post any time of day, from almost anywhere.  With running, I have this narrow window in the morning.

Wow.  I’m watching TV, and I just saw a preview for Four Christmases.  That looks really stupid.  I mean, I like Vince Vaughn and Reese Witherspoon, but there have been way too many holiday movies made about awful family visits, most of them bad.  We don’t need any more.

Well, this counts.  Pretty much all I can think about right now is how much I want to go to sleep, so babbling on my blog is a lower priority.  Good night.

Feeling better, I think.

So I just cleaned the kitchen while listening to Van Halen.  Loud Van Halen.  And thanks to Christina and Ross having birthdays near each other this month, I am about to eat leftover Indian food for dinner.  Yay!  Also, I took Sudafed this morning and it seems to be working.  🙂

AND John cracks me up.  In response to this email from Greg,

“Not even sure what mulled wine is, but I’m in.”

John responded with

“It’s wine that you think about for a long time before serving.”

So yeah, I laughed.  Out loud.  A lot.  🙂  It’s another reason I keep him around.

Don’t speak!

I spent most of today trying not to talk.  I cough less when I don’t talk.  Also, today has been better because of Delsym, I think.  Advertising companies should love me.  I saw a commercial for Delsym (it’s a cough suppressant) and then went out and bought some when I went to the store.  It seems to be working nicely.  That or I’m getting better.  It’s hard to tell.

I spend much of my time trying to figure out how I’m going to get everything done in time.  In time for what?  For whatever is happening next.  Here’s two for instances:

1. Colin’s birthday party is this Saturday.  I meant to go to Toys R Us to pick out a present for him this past weekend, but I was feeling pretty sick so I didn’t do it.  Now I need to do it this week.  Or maybe Saturday morning.  That’s an idea.  I just hate waiting until the last minute.

2. Winter running clothes.  I really want some moisture-wicking running leggings that I can throw on under my running pants when it’s really cold.  We have a 5K this Saturday, but it’s in the afternoon, so it won’t be completely freezing.  However, I just signed us up to run a 5K at 8:30 in the morning on Thanksgiving Day.  THAT will be cold, and I will definitely want the extra layer.  So when I do I buy those?  This weekend?  Well, Saturday is pretty packed, what with shopping for Colin (see?  I’ve already penciled that in), going to his party, going to the 5K, and then hanging out with Jess and Chuck (who are coming out that night – yay!).  Then Sunday…I might have time on Sunday.  But Sunday is also when I will be doing as much advance shopping for Thanksgiving as I can.  Fortunately, there is a Target right next to Wegman’s.  I might have time for this after all.  🙂

All that really says about me is that I need to have something to plan for.  A birthday party, a race, Thanksgiving, Chrismukkah, oh crap, Chrismukkah is coming.  I really wanted to have most of the shopping done before Thanksgiving.  Not going to happen.  Great.

Nothing in particular

I just got back from babysitting Colin.  He’s adorable, of course, and almost a year old.  I think we had a good time.  I did, anyway, and he seemed to be enjoying himself.  On my way home, I decided to get the essential grocery shopping out of the way (1% milk for John since my skim milk grosses him out, lunch stuff, and a toothbrush) so I wouldn’t have to leave the house again.  It’s cold and really windy today, and I’m still not really feeling any better, so I’d rather just stay inside where it’s warm.  I put High Society in the DVD player, and the Overture is playing.  I love musicals.  There are some songs in this one I could do without (“You’re Sensational” comes to mind immediately), but I love “Little One”.  Ooh, I forgot Saul Chaplin was involved in the music for this one.  I don’t how I could forget that actually, since a photo from a rehearsal with him and Grace Kelly is on the cover of his autobiography.  He was involved in pretty much all of my favorite Hollywood musicals.  I should reread that.  I think it’s hilarious that Louis Armstrong plays himself.

Aw, John’s a good husband.  He just went out and did cold yard things in the cold yard so I wouldn’t have to.  I guess I’ll keep him.

Grace Kelly is just TOO perfect.  It’s not fair.  And her clothes!  Again, not fair.  Maybe I should make looking and dressing like her my goal.  That’s unrealistic, but wouldn’t it be nice?  Okay, skipping this scene (“You’re Sensational”).  The song drags.  Change of pace is a good idea, Satch, thanks.  Except that this song (“Samantha”) doesn’t really do the trick.  But whatever.

Just ordered Thai food.  Yum!  I’m just gonna publish this because you don’t really need me to finish the movie first.

Lost the will to mess with my gallery tonight.

I spent the last few hours working on getting my photo gallery the way I want it.  You may notice (if you even noticed it was there, Mom) that nothing has changed.  I found some helpful pages and I think I know how to do it, but my first attempt failed spectacularly.  Okay, there was nothing spectacular about my failure.  But I don’t have the energy to keep going with it tonight.  I’ll try again tomorrow.

What’s with the weather?

I know, I know, it’s boring to write about the weather.  I went for a jog this morning fully convinced that it was going to rain at any second.  According to www.weather.com, the humidity is 100% (which I can believe, now that I’ve been out there) and there is a 100% chance of rain for every hour of the day.  So I was just hoping to get lucky.  And I guess I did, since I didn’t get rained on, but it was like running in a sauna!  Sixty-five degrees, ridiculously humid, not enough wind to make a difference (unless I was running uphill, in which case the wind appeared and tried to shove me backwards down the hill), and then the sun came out (this must be a shock to the people at The Weather Channel) and steam started to rise from the streets, the grass, and ME.  Not my favorite running weather, though it is preferable to below-freezing temperatures in the pre-dawn hours.

There’s the rain.  Now that I’m safely inside.  Of course, we’re still going out in it today.  John and I are planning to do some window-shopping (and possibly actual shopping) in historic Leesburg today and then have lunch.  It’s time to get moving.


I finished reading Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides this morning.  I got the impression that I was supposed to think it’s one of the greatest books ever written, or at least be moved by it.  I wasn’t.  That’s not to say I didn’t think it was good, or that I didn’t enjoy it.  I did.  But it’s not something I would reread (which should say something to people who know me (who I’m sure are the only people reading this blog (assuming anyone other than Mom is reading), but that’s a topic for another post.  I need to get out of parentheses now.)) or even recommend wholeheartedly to someone.  It was very meh.  Shrug.  Whatever.  It was like there was something missing.  The narrator kept me at a distance, so I never really felt like I was feeling what the characters were feeling.  And if the point was that Cal/Callie was neither male nor female, but something in the middle, then why was the adult Cal so strongly male?  It seemed that he made a choice to be male, not female, and not something new or a combination of both.  And maybe it wasn’t a choice, really, but that characterization seemed to miss the point that I thought the book was reaching toward.  But maybe it was just me who missed the point.  Either way, I think that’s why I feel so indifferent to the book.   No biggie.  I’m sure I’ll enjoy my next book more, whatever it is.

Home again, home again

I’m home now, in the comfort of my fuzzy pants, waiting for dinner to be ready.  John got his last birthday present from me today.  I ordered him a year’s subscription to Runner’s World magazine a couple of days before his birthday, but then they said it would be 4-6 weeks before we got the first issue.  Can it really take that long to process an order and get it to the circulation department?  What year is it again?  It actually only took about 3 and a half weeks, but still.  Tonight is going to be all about the couch, random TV, and tea.  Maybe old episodes of That 70’s Show, or new ones of The Mentalist.  We might also have an episode or two of Heroes and True Blood.  So exciting.  🙂

So now dinner’s ready and I can begin doing nothing.  Hooray!

Poor me

I’m getting sick (cough, cough).  Today is getting progressively more miserable.  Last night I tried to sleep sitting up, but I kept sliding down.  I might have to move to the couch tonight.  On the other hand, puppies! I can (and do) watch them all day.  For instance, Mr. Purple just attacked Mr. Black.  Mr. Yellow just tried to intervene, so Mr. Blue jumped him.  It’s awesome.  🙂  Awesomely cute.

Also?  Cough drops are pretty bad.  Just thought I’d share.

Working on a rainy day

Today’s the kind of day you need to be at home for.  We were up really late last night (after midnight – party animals!) and slept in this morning, only to wake up to solid rain.  It’s HARD to go to work when it’s so cozy at home.  On the other hand, there is work to be done.  I’m sure there will be plenty of gloomy, rainy, maybe even snowy, weekend days to enjoy this winter.

The Day-Ruiner (he ruins days)

So I was having an okay day at work.  Things were busy, but not overly so.  Then the Day-Ruiner called.  This guy has been avoiding me for two weeks (it could have just been phone tag, but he admitted it!), and then when he finally called, he was a total jerk.  He half-heartedly apologized for giving me a hard time, but then he kept right on doing it.  Seriously, I’m all tense about it now.

Chad and Jeremy

Last night John and I went to see Chad and Jeremy perform at the Barns at Wolf Trap.  Two things: if you ever listen to oldies, you know who they are.  Their biggest hits (and almost only hits) were “A Summer Song” and “Yesterday’s Gone”.  They played “Yesterday’s Gone” pretty early in the concert and ended with “A Summer Song”.  And I recognized a song in the encore (I hadn’t realized it was one of theirs), but naturally I can’t even hear how it goes in my head anymore, so I can’t tell you what it was.  The second thing is about the Barns.  That is such a cool venue.  This was only the second time John and I have been there.  The first was for an improv comedy show.  It really is two barns joined together.  The box office and the bar are in one barn, and they’re connected by a couple of hallways to the barn that houses the stage.  The walls are exposed wood, really big planks, and it has high ceilings.  We were sitting just under the balcony overhang last night, maybe 50-60 feet from the stage.  It’s an intimate setting, and the sound is really good.

Before the show started, when everyone was finding their seats, they were playing oldies over the sound system, and you could hear random people (myself included) singing along.  That was kind of cool.

So the concert started, and Chad and Jeremy came out on stage.  They talked about their career and played songs mostly in order.  They were quietly funny and quite self-deprecating.  They had some minor difficulties (took several tries to start some songs, had some problems keeping a string on Jeremy’s guitar in tune), but they handled everything with humor.  It was fun.  Pleasant might be an accurate word to describe the evening.  Mellow works, too.  Their “political” songs were iffy, at best.  They played two or three of those, and the lyrics were pretty bad.  That part reminded John of why This is Spinal Tap is so funny.  The patter in between the songs and some of the career history reminded him of why A Mighty Wind is so funny.

I mentioned the people singing along before the concert for a reason.  At a normal rock concert, people scream and shout and sing at the top of their lungs.  This was obviously not that kind of concert.  People did sing along (at least to the two songs everyone knew), but they did it quietly, almost as if they were singing to themselves.  It was very low-key and kind of funny.

And yes, we were the youngest people there by at least 20 years.


I made promises to myself yesterday about this blog, and then, because I’m an idiot, nearly broke the first one on the first day.  The second day.  Whatever.  So here are those promises.

1. Post something every day.  Don’t let this fall into disuse like every other journal/diary I’ve ever tried to keep.

2. Don’t obsess over what I write.  I’m writing what’s in my head, no matter how that may make me look to whoever might read it.  Look at the title of the blog.  This is not earth-shattering news.

Hmm.  So maybe I only have two promises for now.  I’m sure I’ll come up with more.