Monday, February 23, 2009

37 days to go . . .

And we both had good weekends. Carly had a great time at her first baby shower. You should check out the swag she got! Some really neat stuff, and the nesting is in full force.

And I was thinking a lot about this new life. Part of the reason we are so comfortable having a baby (and we ought be now, because she's coming anyway) might have something to do with our life. We are two very happy people. We both have jobs we enjoy (as much as someone can enjoy a middling job).

And now I am getting envolved in the community. Last fall it was flag football. Now, I am coaching Bemidji Bombers. We had our third tournament this weekend. It hit me when I saw one fo the kids making a very simple move that I taught him. He made an easy basket cut. He missed the layup, but the play was there, and he saw it. He saw it because I gave him the tools. That feels good.

Later, we were playing a team whose coach was an asshole. He was yelling at his kids, yelling at the refs, yelling at anyone who would listen. One of my kids came over, put his hand on my shoulder, and said, "Coach, I'm glad you aren't like that guy." We smiled.

These kids are having fun, and learning at the same time. They are a great group of boys, but they have something wrong. They think I am doing them a favor by coaching. Nothing could be farther from the truth. They are doing me the favor letting me coach them, and what I am gaining is so much greater.


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

49 days to go

And I have been thinking about being a "grown up". I guess what that boils down to is I cant quit my job. That sounds lame, but really, that's the only thing that I am doing resposibly that I didn't already do.

I have had a lot of jobs over the years, and I have come to a very certain conclusion: I am never happy with my boss. I think this comes for a nice mixture of being brighter than most of them, and being arrogant enough to make the above statement.

In this case, though, it couldn't be more true. I think the guy is smart, but I don't think he is all that bright. He'll give away the farm just so he doesn't have to deal with problems, and then complain about the money we are bringing in. That's a rough one for me to handle, especially when the customer is wrong (which, contrary to common addages, is a lot). And a few years ago I would have just gave my notice, and come what may.

Now, though, I have a family to think about. And that means toughing it out, even though I know the situation won't get better, so I can make sure my child has all the things she needs, and her mother doesn't have to work for all of them. That's growing up, I guess.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009


...because I have need of a space to write a few thoughts, and this space is still available, I am changing this from the sport themed blog it sometimes was, to a journal of my life, mostly as it relates to the arrival of our newborn girl.

For those of you that did not know the above, well, suprise! She will be born in 50 days, and we are naming her Keira Lorainne.

Today, I want to talk, if I might, about the pregnancy itself. I have heard all these horror stories about what it would be like: the mood swings, sleepless nights, etc. It may be a testiment to how well we deal with things, my wife and I, or just to her strength of character (more likely), but so far - knock on wood - it has been relatively easy going. Carly is, no doubt, uncomfortable, but she has not once let it effect her mood.

Part of that, too, has to be how amazingly excited we both are to have this child. This is something we have wanted for some time, and after a short period of trying, it happened. The idea of being parents, I think, far outweighs the discomfort of the process, or the "sacrifices" we are asked to make.

And that is probably easier for us, as well. We are not partiers, and our friends are all very low-key, low maintenence people, as are we. I know our lives are changing, and are about to change more, but our otherwise boring lifestyle lends itself to change easier than most.

Anyway, as you can see from teh scattered thoughts above, I am still trying to find a place for all this, and a process for, well, processing it all. This space, I imagine, will help with that, and might distill some of the things left floating in my head.


Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Since I have been so absentee, all of you have left. Maybe that brings the appeal back to this space, maybe not (I honestly can't decide) But it does mean I want to write some things here, and if you read it, so be it.


Why so many people are saying "I will wait for the debates.." to decide who they will vote for, while those same people say both sides are liars. Look, people, you can't have it both ways. What will a debate with two liars tell you that you don't already know? This is a stupid way to base your vote. That's right, you are stupid.

Really, what people ought do is look at the voting records and compare them with the platforms of each candidate. Pick out the three or four most important things in your life, and see which candidate meshes. Truth be told, that is a tough enough task. Then compare that with the records (which don't lie).


To do the leg work, do they? It is easier to just listen to the ads and sound knowledgable, and easier to agree with a party, rather than a candidate.

And you know where easy gets us? Right where we are now. 100 years ago, we did not have mass media, the internet, or even TV. We do now, and people ought learn to take advantage. Fact checking is a few keystroke away. Watch shows that are FOR the person or position you are against. Read the Times AND the Post. Hell, read TIME and NEWSWEEK (and, maybe U.S. News and World Report, I guess). Watch PBS and listen to NPR. Check out Rush Limbaugh's "show" (ok I couldn't help myself on that one).


This election could easily turn out to be the most import in our recent history, and everyone is treating it like an episode of "Survivor". The reality is it IS reality, and in a very real sense, we are in danger of losing our country.


Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Lipstick, the Pig, and the whole bloody mess

OK, I wasn't going to post anything political (hell, I wasn't even going to post, I am just that lazy, dammit) But I felt this whole issue spoke to something large enough it was worth taking time out of my already boring day to talk about.

Enough is enough, already! Look, the problem here is not the wording, it's not the supposed inexperience of one side, or the clever catch phrase of the other. It's the damned sensationally driven media.

Here's an example given by some writer I don't care enough about to link to:

Suppose it was McCain who had used a worn out, tired old phrase. But instead of a phrase used by McCain before (such as the lipstick on a pig phrase) or even the same phrase that one of his top aides NAMED HIS DAMNED BOOK (that's true, look it up) he used this phrase, "Let's call a spade a spade"

Would the media be all over it? You betcher ass they would. Would the Obama campaign try to capitalize on it? In a second. Doesn't that mean it's ok for the McCain camp to jump on it?

That's a big resounding HELL NO!

It's wrong for both sides, dammit. And it's wrong for the media to get into it at all. In fact, I think, it's up to the media, if either side gets into it, to call shanagans on the whole thing. It's up to the media to call it what it is, childish misdirection aimed at tugging the emotional strings of the populous in an attempt to lead them away from the political issues of the campaign.

And I am sick of it. I am hoping beyond hope the TV watching, internet browsing, paper reading public is sick of it too. If not, we could easily see another election as popularity contest, and another 4 years of say one thing and do anything politics.

And, think if you will on this: How sad is it, and what does it say for the state of politics, that on THIS DAY, when we are asked to reflect on Patriotism, and what it means to be an American, Both candidates have decided to call a "cease fire" on attack ads - for the day. That they both recognize how terrible these ads are, and that they both quit these ads and join together in addressing the nation can be seen as noble by some, and maybe it is. But what does it say for either candidate when they start the attack ads up again tomorrow? If they can recognize how unpatriotic, and petty, it is to attack each other instead of talking about the issues today, why not tomorrow?


Sunday, August 17, 2008


I had stopped blogging. I know I had. But really, I was just being lazy. It used to be not a day went by without me saying to myself "I should blog about that." Now, when I get that thought in my head, it is followed by "why bother?"

But enough has gone on, and a few of you still hang around, so I might as well dive in.


The season is almost over, and I have spent the last couple days reflecting on that. I have managed to pick up some medals in my age category (something I failed to do last year) and have improved in all areas of competition.


I recently re-ran the Paul Bunyan Triathlon. This was my first race, ever, last year. So this year I wanted to use it as a litmus for how much I have improved. Last years time was (this is from memory and might be a bit off) 1:28:53.

This year, with the same race conditions, I pulled off a 1:17:13. To shave eleven and a half minutes off in one year is amazing. I felt really good about that. I took more than half that time off my swim alone, which is a testament both to my dedication to swimming, and Wade constantly pushing me to be better. Having a training partner is invaluable in that I feel like I am letting him down not to train (which is much harder than letting myself down, a daily occurrence at times).

With that victory, I took on the first ever Olympic Distance race. That's more than double the distance of the sprints I had been doing, and the first step towards Ironman, which continues to be a goal.


Overall, I am glad I went through it. The race conditions were great (though everyone, in typical Minnesotan fashion complained it was too humid) My nerves were in control, mostly. Still, I need some work.

My 800m swim time was 17:11, so I figured, with attrition, I would be somewhere around 36 minutes for the 1500m. I came in at 44:45. That hurt. A lot. I recovered some on the bike, averaging just shy of 19mph, which though slow for me was was I was targeting for my first 25 mile bike race. In the run I targeted am 8:50 mile, again slow for me, but a good starting point to build on for later 6.2 runs. I came in at 8:45 on the run, and 3:03 overall. Well off my projected time of 2:55, and a bit disappointed.

The disappointment hasn't lasted, though. I know I can do better on the run, as my legs felt more fresh than I would like at the end. I can probably get the bike back up to the 20mph range I am used to, with a little off season hill work (the course really was challenging with all the hills it presented), and I feel like I did the best I could on the swim, and I KNOW it will be better with an offseason of training. The idea that I swam a mile in competition, when last year I struggled to complete even a few hundred meters without the doggie paddle, helps to soothe the mental wound of such a slow time. The idea that just two years in to triathlon I am up to the second of my four goal distances is great. I have a base to build on for next year, when I plan on doing a schedule at least 50% Olympic distance.


I am impressed with USA basketball up to this point. We just routed Spain by 37 points, and looked very good and aggressive doing it. If I choose to update my blog in the next few days (maybe I will start blogging from work) I will give a full work up of these guys...My life is just about perfect right now, and it feels just about great...Gwen, At Average Joe, I was wondering how I knew YOU, too. The best I could come up with was last year after Young Life we had the same conversation. When you came up to me I was about to apologize for staring and explain the whole thing, imagine my surprise when you said it first!...Vikings are 1-1 in preseason, which means very little. Except Tavarius Jackson is throwing the ball well, which means everything for our season. I still have my doubts, but so far so good...Chad's cabin has lost a step (because I refuse to admit WE all have) but was a great weekend anyway.


Monday, May 19, 2008


The results are in: I am trying very hard not to be too bummed about this one, but I feel like I left a lot more out there than I would have liked. My swim and bike times were solid, but the run was disgusting. I mean, I stunk out loud.

Here's the good news: Last year I was 6:30 minutes off my next competitors time (in my age category) at the start of the season. This year, it is just under 3:00 minutes. Had I ran how I think I can, and how I did at the end of last year, I would have beat him. That's encouraging.

My swim time is considerably better than last year. So there's that. And, it was the first race, a full two months sooner than last year.

here are a couple pics:

that's me in the first transition: If I look winded it is because I was swimming, and it is not easy, or natural, to me.

That's just a good shot of my awesome bike. Need new pedals, though, or I will always look like that when I first get on.