Thursday, November 29, 2007

Cover your eyes!

There's a swear word in this one, but it was too funny to pass up.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Mystery at the Science Lab

Yesterday a mystery note appeared on my bench that said,

'Youth medium in blue for Faith'

What does this mean to you?

Stop and think for a minute.

Most of you that don't work in a science lab are probably thinking that the note describes a shirt size or other piece of clothing.

Well the rest of us that work in a science lab interpreted it completely differently. We refer to 'medium' as bacteria food (eg 'growth medium') and Faith is someone who used to work in the lab, so several of us were thinking that it was a note requesting a specific type of growth medium that Faith needed. Especially since the note was found under some old lab notebooks. So we were all trying to figure out what 'Youth Medium' would be and why it might be blue.

We asked all around and couldn't find the author of the note so we did what any fiesty group of people did; we stuck with the dumb idea that it was really a weird kind of growth medium that nobody had ever heard of and not a T-shirt size.

Eventually the author of the note showed up and when she found out about the discussion we had been having about her note she laughed at us for almost ten minutes. It turns out it really was a T-shirt size and we're just a bunch of big nerds.

But at least it entertained us for almost a full day.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Wandering the aisles of the grocery store


I have always hated to go to the grocery store. When I was in college, I shopped smart and freeloaded off my mom and boyfriend and roommates so that I only had to go to the grocery store once a month or less (and I usually kept it under $100, which is amazing). I ate mostly non-perishables, switched to soy milk (lasts longer), and bought fruits and veggies that can stay fresh in the fridge for weeks and weeks (apples, green pepper, carrots). When I moved to Minneapolis, where I hardly knew anyone, I had to go grocery shopping a little more often but still dreaded it like the plague.

What I hate about grocery shopping: 1) it always takes an hour, even if you only need one thing. 2) it is impossible to remember everything, so that you have to turn around a few days later and go back, spending another hour picking up that one thing you forgot 3) it is always freezing in the summer and way too hot in the winter 4) The amount of focus required to find and get what you need is momentous and maybe even Herculean - due to hoardes of other shoppers, fluorescent lights, canned muzak, and illogical food placement and 5) I also hate cooking, just so you know.

What has really saved me is having a very Studly Hubby who loves to cook and therefore freely offers to go grocery shopping. It is the mostly wonderful thing.

Nowadays I go to the grocery store for entertainment. I tail behind my Studly Hubby, and take my time picking out some of my favorite juice and then reading up on the tabloids, or hanging out in the soap aisle and then deciding what new kind of chocolate to try. This is grocery shopping at its finest.

This may have become one of my favorite weekend activities.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Blogging about blogging

Finally, here are some answers to the questions my Dad posted a while ago, for everyone to ruminate over...

1. do you find that blogging tends to make you frame your life experiences in the same way that carrying a camera tends to make you frame the things you see- it makes you look at everything, and say, i wonder if i could blog about that?

Yes. I think that's part of the lure. It makes you notice things you wouldn't otherwise and try to remember them. Since I always try to keep my blog optimistic, it makes me notice the good things more than the bad, and I think it has made me more cheerful in general.

2. do you engineer your posts in any way to attract more audience? if so, how? do you include words that will attract search engines? do you write posts about hot, frequently-searched public persona?

Yes. I was planning to write an entire post about this but haven't gotten around to it. I do all of the above and more, but only when it suits my fancy.

3. do you check who has come to visit you? do you notice what words they used to search and find you? do you notice how long they actually spent on your site? do you take the words they used, and use them again, or keep using them?

Yes, more so when I first started this blog, to all of your questions.

4. you know how important pictures are when you open up a site. do you choose your pictures in order to hold visitors, or do you just put in there whatever you can? do you look for free pictures, take them yourself, or shamelessly steal them from google images like everyone else?

I try to post pictures as often as possible, because I think it really helps get my point across if I can find the right one, but it takes a long time so I don't always get it done. I shamelessly take pictures from other websites whenever possible but also try to take my own whenever possible. Both take a while to get together and put into a post.

5. do you feel bad about bumping people from your blogroll? how important is a template to you when you visit blogs? do you really admire people who list thousands of blogs over there, or would you rather see someone who just has maybe ten or twelve best friends and relatives?

I have only once bumped someone from my blogroll, and it was because they closed down the blog. I like to see just ten or twelve blog links on a blogroll, but honestly I don't usually notice the blogroll, instead I tend to follow links that are within posts.

6. do you really visit all those blogs you list under "daily reads" or "blogs i visit?" do you read them? this seems like a herculean task. how much time can a person invest in being in the citizen's media, a regular?

I visit about four blogs a day from my blogroll, and most of the rest at least once a week (usually on weekends). I have replaced newspaper reading time with reading and posting to blogs, although now I include reading news websites as part of my morning ten minute ritual (over cereal).

7. has blogging changed your writing? your perspective? your alliances? your likes/dislikes? your politics? how has it affected the way you see things?

Blogging has not changed my writing as much as I hoped it would - I think if the goal is to improve your writing, you have to try harder than this (eg get feedback, move out of your comfort zone, etc). It has changed my perspective (see #1 above) but not much else.

Seattle Half-Marathon

2007 Official Finish Time (Chip Time): 2:25:43 ...11.1 min/mile average!!!

(Actual Time, 2:30:50)

Woo-hoo!! We beat our goal by almost five minutes! And we shaved off A FULL TEN MINUTES from our previous half-marathon time (2:35:37, Vancouver 2007). Wow, I am super impressed with myself.

And now for some pictures, from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper (our pics aren't in yet)

This is the half-marathon crowd running down 5th Ave at the start of the race. There were over 11,000 registered for all the events over the weekend.

Someone ran barefoot! You can see their pacer chip tied around one ankle (what's on the other ankle???). I have seen people running barefoot but never at a race or when the temperature was below 70. It is an incredibly strange thing.


Everyone gets a medal at the end! They are even kinda pretty. If you want, the volunteers will even put them around your neck for you.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

CYBER Monday


By now everyone knows that the Friday after Thanksgiving is Black Friday. It appears the shopping crazy continues... now the Monday after Thanksgiving is Cyber Monday because of the internet shopping craze that takes place on that day.

The Studly Hubby and I are huge fans of the internet shopping.

Seattle Half-Marathon: A Review

We did it!

We ran the half-marathon this morning at 7:30 am with a finish time of somewhere just under 2:30 (it was just over 2:30 last time, so I'm improving).


Unfortunately I couldn't bring my camera with me so this is a picture I swiped off of the official website from last year (when it rained). It didn't rain this year - it was beautiful, sunny, and not as cold as we thought.

We started off with an unexpected 1-mile warm-up run because we missed the bus. After we got there about three minutes too late, we decided to jog over to the other bus stop in our neighborhood to check out the times, then came back to the first bus stop and took the next bus which got us there just in the nick of time (we were one of the last to cross the start line). The warm-up jog was great. I realized right away that I had one too many layers on so while we were on the bus I had time to take off the middle layer and put it around my waist and re-situate my race numbers.

The race itself was very invigorating and a pretty route. They took good care of us, with lots of volunteers, more-than-usual porta-potties, a Gu stop, and first aid stations everywhere.

Race highlights:

1. Running past the homeless shelter. This was the biggest crowd in the first hour and they were very enthusiastic. This was also a highlight of our first half-marathon.

2. Interlaken Blvd. It's a notoriously big bad hill, but oh-so-pretty and takes us through a forest with big tall beautiful trees.

3. Getting to within 2 miles of the end with 20 minutes to get there to make our goal time (2:30).

4. My Studly Hubby's creative encouragement in the last two miles ('you'll have plenty of time to be slow when you're DEAD! - or at least when we get to the finish line').

5. Witnessing TWO arrests in the last two miles... we're pretty sure they were not race participants (hecklers?).

6. EATING at the end (they provide lots of food and food samples), and then getting kicked out of our choice breakfast place because we were being too 'impatient'... we must have looked really impatient! I thought we were just sweaty but maybe they interpreted it the wrong way.

Well it was a very big and exciting adventure for us. We had a lot of fun and will definitely do it again.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Mrs. Hulk Hogan?


This just in: Hulk Hogan is getting divorced.

That's right, there's a MRS. Hulk Hogan.

I don't know about the rest of you, but that seems really weird to me.

Apparently they have kids, a multi-million dollar mansion, a reality tv show, and everything.

I guess I've had my head buried in the sand. But, now that I am totally informed I can make sure you all stay totally informed too. These things are very important.

To Mr. and Mrs. Hulk: so sorry it didn't work out!!

Seattle Half-Marathon: Pre-Run Jitters


Today we trekked over to the Westin hotel in downtown Seattle to register for the half-marathon, pick up a race bib and pacer, and cruise through the expo. It was quite a show with people everywhere and stuff all over the place. It is friggin' cold here in Seattle this week (35F) so I bought some light-weight gloves and warmer synthetic socks than the other ones I had. I am very slowly turning into a full-blown runner. One of these days I will really look like one, and then nobody will recognize me!

I am getting nervous. I wasn't nervous until we went to that blasted expo. It is nice and sunny and very pretty out today (although cold) and we are definitely prepared, so I have no reason to be nervous. This is also not my first half-marathon (it's my second), and we aren't traveling and I'm not sick or anything.

But it's 13 miles!!!

The thing I'm really fixed on is the cold weather. It stinks no matter which way we do it. If we dress for the hike over there and the wait at the start line, I'll be way too warm for the race. I could wear a warm sweatshirt and then throw it away at the start line, or use a 'drop-bag' that they collect from you at the start and then give back to you at the finish. The 'drop-bags' can be a hassle though, especially when the race starts at 7:30 am and you don't want to get there any earlier than you have to. So I'm still working on my options.

Tonight we're going to go out for a big meal with some buddies we are running the race with tomorrow, at Mama's in Belltown (a hip part of downtown).


They are very fast runners and are all into 'carb-loading' and all that. They also look really cool when they run. I want to look cool and carb-load too, so I hang out with them hoping I will absorb their running coolness through osmosis. We will also be 'recovering' with them at another restaurant after the race tomorrow.

7:30 am, get ready!

Friday, November 23, 2007

After-Thanksgiving

What does one do on the day after Thanksgiving?

Well, we slept in, had turkey leftovers, and adventured over to Ballard to check out a funky gift shop, Archie McPhee's (fun place!). Then my VERY Studly Hubby took me to the movies to see Enchanted, a totally girly movie about a fairy tale princess who ends up in Manhattan and is helped out by the super smokin' hot Patrick Dempsey.


Did I mention Patrick Dempsey is smokin' hot?

So is my Studly Hubby. He was one of only three males in the otherwise packed movie theater and he did not complain once. Not even when I made him hold my hand.

Then we came home and I finally got around to washing our running ballcaps. This should have been done way before now. After a good scrubbing, they were like-new and all ready for the Big Run on Sunday.

I hope you had a good day-after-Thanksgiving too!!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving in Seattle

This year, for the first time, we were not with family for Thanksgiving. Instead, we stayed here in Seattle and helped host a feast for other scragglers without family. It turned into a roaring group of ten people, with two little ones, and a nice pile of food. We had two "Thanksgiving Virgins" at the event who had never been to a Thanksgiving dinner (one from Japan, the other from Brazil). I think they were quite impressed. We are now exhausted and over-full as usual. Today CNN posted an article about why we are so tired after Thanksgiving dinner - it's not the tryptophan, it's because it's a Big Event - with all the drinking and eating and visiting, no wonder a person gets so tired!

My Dad, who is getting tired of reading about my TV and shopping interests, has posted a series of questions to ponder - I will answer them sometime this weekend but I am too tired tonight. He, like me, wonders about how blogging affects one's life and what sort of things motivate a blogger. Hrm, I'm not sure. We'll see what sort of answers surface. I invite you, my dear readers, to take a look and post some answers of your own to any or all of the questions on blogging.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

What's Playing on Our TV?

Now that it's dark for an hour before we even get home at night, we find ourselves drawn to our TV again this winter. What we've been watching:

1. Kitchen Nightmares with Chef Ramsey: This show is great! Chef Ramsey almost always gets into a fight with someone and then gets tearful hugs and gratitude from everyone at the end. It's very emotional.

2. Thursday nights on NBC, specifically 30 Rock (my new favorite show), and The Office. It's so nice to have Thursday Night TV back!

3. Our beloved Netflix... these days we've been watching Arrested Development and the new Doctor Who (which is excellent).

Today is like Friday, so happy Friday!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Cupcakes


Cupcakes are the new coffee. Cupcake boutiques are popping up everywhere! Back in Minneapolis, a cupcake place opened up in the last year we were there, but we never had time to go there and get a cupcake.

So when a cupcake boutique, Trophy, opened up in our neighborhood, right on our running route, we started all over again with the "we outta go there" intentions. And tonight, on our way back from our light pre-race run, my Studly Hubby convinced us we outta go there TONIGHT.

It was very good! But quite a sugar rush - I suggest anyone with plans to eat one of their cupcakes plan to go for a fast two-mile sprint immediately after, followed by a long nap.

Monday, November 19, 2007

6 am

My Studly Hubby has been getting up on his own at 6 am lately because he's crazy. Well, now I'm doing it too. Is this something you just do when you get older? Or is it because we are so healthy from all that running that we don't need to sleep as much anymore??

Well honestly 6 am isn't so bad. Just as long as we don't start getting up at 5 am next year, and 4 am the year after that...

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Rewards

This morning we ran a strong long run (it felt good!) and then rewarded ourselves by pigging out at the wonderful Cafe Flora, and going to REI and buying stuff, which we seem to be super good at. I bought a pair of synthetic socks for running, and a bunch of running goo ('Gu' and 'Cliff Shots') for the half-marathon next weekend. I also bought an awesome new pair of Keen shoes (below). I am now officially a Dedicated Keen Girl. I have four pairs! I have never owned so many shoes of one brand. Keen is great! They are comfy, waterproof, and pretty. And they have sturdy enough support that I can wear them all day at my job (where I'm standing up a lot).

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Saturday's Post

It took almost everything I had to post last night. I got home from work late, thanks to some surprise results that caught me off guard (the frustrating kind, not the good kind), and we had to go running because we skipped Thursday's run because it was pouring outside (the heavy pouring kind not the tolerable drizzle kind) and I was exhausted because I had put my heart and soul into rewriting a paper for my old boss in Minnesota (my heart and soul!). So at 9 pm last night I told my Studly Hubby I just couldn't force out a post and he said, "Just post one word! or a link! you can do it!" It was just the encouragement I needed. I did it and I'm very proud. Thanks Studly Hubby!

He is chatting with his sister now. He's become overzealous about life lately and is getting up at the obscenely early time of 6 am. So on Saturday he gets up at 6 am, plays around on his computer, and calls his relatives in the midwest. Then when I get up three hours later he's been wide awake for ages and is thick in the middle of his own party. Well it's fun to hear him talking to his sister, they are good buddies.

I wanted to put one more link out there for any of you who are interested. It's the USA Track and Field's website for creating and finding running routes: www.usatf.org/routes. On their website you can use google maps to map out a printable running route and find out mileage and elevation. It's very useful!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Friday's Post

My geeky husband wants to introduce you to the blog of the "fake Steve Jobs."

Happy Friday!!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

My Bad Eyes


I have bad eyes. I blame both my mom and my dad, I think they contributed equally. Sometime in college, my eye doctor figured out that I was getting headaches because my eyes prefer to focus in front of whatever I'm looking at instead of on it (this is a neurological problem that is actually quite common but you only notice it if you read a lot like when you're a strapping young college student). This would explain why as a kid I always preferred to read in the dark (relaxes my eyes) and I would always hold the book an inch away from my face (you bring things closer to you to compensate without noticing).

As a result, I wear bifocals. This helps a great deal. Once I started wearing the bifocals, my eyes got worse because I wasn't fighting the problem any more. So now, without my bifocals, I can barely read a menu without getting a headache. Most of the time, the bifocals do the trick. Sometimes, it's not enough. If I have to do a lot of heavy reading, I will eventually get a headache even with the bifocals.

I have a few other problems too. It's weird, but I get motion sick when I'm counting colonies (bacterial colonies on plates). When I was in grad school and had to count a lot of colonies, I theorized that the problem was caused by a problem looking through the right part of my glasses (you are limited in mobility when doing this sort of thing). I tried all sorts of weird setups so that I would look through the right part of my glasses and never found anything that worked all that great, plus I think I was ratching myself up the nerd-scale at work. So I just settled for taking a nice five minute break every half hour or so to walk around and get my motion sensors back under control.

Also, some of you with bifocals may have noticed this problem: going up and down stairs can really get you screwed up if you're not used to wearing the bifocals. Sometimes when I know I won't have to be doing any reading, I switch over to contacts, and when I switch back to my bifocals I have to be careful not to fall down any stairs.

So that is a little piece of my life.

Tomorrow is Friday!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Picking Priorities

I am usually the kind of person that sticks to a commitment - if I sign up for a class, I go to every one. Well I'm seriously falling out of character with the swim lessons I signed up for on Wednesday nights. Last week, I skipped because I opted to go get drunk in celebration of good news on my grant (and drinking and swimming are probably not a good combination). This week I skipped swimming so I could work on finishing a paper from grad school. What's weird is that swim lessons are on Wednesday night, so I was already skipping something else - book club! I haven't been to book club since July. So this is an odd night - I'm skipping BOTH book club AND swimming tonight. I feel kind of guilty, except I'm working so it's an unusual kind of guilt. I guess I'm entering the adult world of Feeling Guilty for Working Too Much.... hmmmm....

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Posting from Bed

I'm in bed right now. That's right, I have violated the sanctity of our bedroom by bringing my laptop in here. Normally I try not to do that, but I think it's allowed because I'm not working, although it sort of feels like homework because NaBloPoMo is making me post today. Not that I don't want to post today, just that I forgot until I was in the shower and I had already mentally gone to bed by the time I was in the shower so I thought, well, I can post real quick if I do it from bed.

I don't really have much to post about.

Oh, I know. My Studly Hubby and I ran a new route tonight - we went through Fremont and past a dessert/bakery cafe with cheesecake in the window and the only reason we didn't stop was because we don't normally have money with us when we go out running. I think next time we'll take some money.

Also I would like to take this opportunity to announce that my Studly Hubby has become an even bigger geek. He's now a Microsoft Geek. He only speaks in a weird language that has lots of letters and numbers (eg XTML, HTML) and even my geeky science friends are so impressed by his geekiness that they are emailing him for advice on how to convert files and load drivers and such. He even carries a card around in his wallet with a phone number you can call if you are having problems with Microsoft software. I'm so proud of him!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Veteran's Day

Today was a holiday at the University of Washington, but it was never a holiday for me growing up so I wasn't properly psyched for it. Besides, my Studly Hubby had to work today, and whenever he has to work I try to work too so we can spend our free time together.

So, I went in to work and worked all day. But not everybody else was there so it was a very mellow day. I decided to take advantage of the quiet and get caught up on deskwork, like reading papers and such. It was nice. Isn't that weird, when I 'get to' work on a holiday and I say, "it was nice!"? I guess I like my job.

It's weird having a holiday right before two major holidays. I always felt that way about MLK day, too - although MLK day is after the two major holidays so maybe more useful. March is when I could really use a holiday. I think I really miss spring break. Or maybe it's all about being psyched for it - all those years growing up looking forward to spring break has ruined me.

So I propose we have a holiday in March. We should call it J-Funk Day.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

What a girl wants

My Studly Hubby and I are so excited about Christmas that we already made up our Christmas lists and actually started some shopping. Christmas always comes up so fast and furious that you barely have time to get a ham bought from the grocery store these days, so we thought we'd go ahead and get started even earlier than ever and see whether that helps slow things down when the holiday actually hits.

It's been really fun dreaming about all the things we want and going out to buy some things that other people want, but the truth is that it seems like the true way to slow things down is to take a totally different approach. Maybe instead of trying to do more we should try to do less...

So for Thanksgiving we're going to try a minimalist approach. We are staying here in Seattle, doing nothing more than cooking food just for the two of us. Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday because the two major things going on are food and family, which are two of my favorite things. So this year we'll make some food, and be our own family (a small but mighty family), and revel in a simple kind of holiday spirit.

Can you imagine what Christmas would be like without the usual hubbub and stress? What if the whole world tried doing it that way? Maybe it would be too weird.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Brown Paper Tickets

Have you ever bought tickets for a concert only to have it end up costing twice as much because of tacked-on extra charges (hem, Ticketmaster, hem hem)?

Well Brown Paper Tickets is an alternative solution to this heinous problem.

They are a fair-trade e-ticket service that doesn't charge (much) and actually donates some of their profits.

If you are hosting a concert sometime soon, I encourage you to sell your tickets through Brown Paper Tickets.

And please, some certain patrons really appreciate the availability of chairs, even if they are not right in front of the stage but around the corner, just to give a sore aching back a break every once in a while. Not that I'm getting old or anything, I just like to sit down sometimes.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Happy Friday!!

Oh, thank goodness.

Friday is actually here.

It's been a very good week - but it's still a relief to get to Friday. All week I've been killing myself doing revisions to a paper from graduate school - I don't know if I didn't actually proof read it in the first place or if I've just become a better writer in the last 6 months or so but it needs a lot of fix-ups. We've been training hard for the Seattle half-marathon (coming up in two weeks!) by running faster and harder than ever, and I'm eating everything in the house and everything at the donut shop down the street because of it. We've been working out Christmas travel plans, gift lists, and all that (and I think we may actually start shopping this weekend - isn't that crazy?). Plus I signed up for this crazy blog-every-day thing so now you get to hear the daily details.


My goal for this weekend: take a nap. After another super-crazy-long run on Saturday morning, I don't think that will be a problem.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Midwest travel

*Sigh*

I just spent the last half-hour trying to figure out how to get from St. Louis, where we're flying in to visit my dad, to Iowa City where my mom lives, over Christmas break. Amazingly, renting a car will cost $450, unless we go to extreme measures to rent it, drive it up to Iowa City, and return it all in one day. Maybe we should just buy a car and keep it in the midwest.

If anybody has any ideas I'd love to hear them.

On the positive side, it's Thursday (almost Friday!!). We went to Happy Hour last night and will be going again tonight, then we're going to a Dandy Warhols (psychedelic rock band) concert at the Pyramid Brewery on Saturday night so we've got a fun-packed scene going on here. In the middle of that I've got another 10-mile training run to grit my teeth and get through, but I've inspired myself by planning a fancy breakfast afterwards.

Happy Thursday everyone!!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Good news... and BETTER news!!

The good news is that I've found the shampoo of my dreams... Aveda Smooth Infusion. It has changed my life completely, mostly for the better (the worst part is that I'm now twirling my hair around my fingers again because it's so SOFT I can't help myself).

The even BETTER news is that I got a totally freaking awesome score on an NIH grant that I applied for... the application process was painful (and painful, and painful again) but it ended up being worth all the pain in the end... not only did I learn a lot from the application and revisions process but then I ended up scoring well (eventually)!! I won't find out for a few months whether I actually get money, and in this funding climate it's never good to assume anything, however I scored well within the range that was funded on the last round so things look good.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Herpes: The Cadillac of Viruses

My day was interesting on several levels. First, a favorite professor from my college days (Dr. R) came by for a visit and a seminar, and I got to say hello to him and hear about his research. Second, I found out that he's Vice Chair of the department there now! And third, he said something pretty funny in his seminar that will stick with me for a while:

"Herpes virus is the Cadillac of viruses - it's no Honda Civic."

(he meant that Herpes viruses come fully loaded and ready to impress)

He went on to lecture about the details of Herpesvirus and how they exit from mammalian cells, but I was so insulted by his Honda Civic comment I could hardly pay attention. Or was it an insult? I'm not sure.

No TV!!

Now that there's no TV, I propose that we all blog more. I finally actually signed up for NaBLOPoMo, so now I'm feeling really motivated.

In case you've got your head buried in the sand (not that there's anything wrong with that), there's no TV because the writer's guild is on strike. As usual this has to do with money, but now it's got an interesting twist to it: they want a cut of the internet ad revenue for online TV and movies. Life is getting more complicated every day.

If this goes on for a while, all the pre-taped TV shows will get played and there will be nothing new on anymore. Already we see the impact with Leno and Letterman and other daily shows. Do you think America will finally stop watching TV? This could get interesting. Nowadays there are so many other forms of entertainment (eg internet, video games) that the transition may be surprisingly easy. If this goes on a long while (some are predicting around 9 months), it might even have a permanent impact on what America does at night.

Well I support the strike, I think they have a good point, but I'm also very interested to see how this all ends up shaking out. Meanwhile, I'm going to fill up the empty space by BLOGGING (and I think you all should too).

Monday, November 05, 2007

Human Tetris!

I asked my Studly Hubby what I should post about today (Monday itself isn't much to post about) and he said excitedly "Human Tetris!"

Well I had no idea what this was but since I'm a total Tetris addict I naturally had to go get on YouTube and check it out.

It turns out Human Tetris is a Japanese game show where people try to make their body into certain shapes so they can fit through a shape cut out of a wall. It's kind of like limbo, only instead of going under a ever-lower pole you're going through an ever-stranger shape cut out of a wall. The wall moves towards the person and the person stands in front of a pit of water so that if the person doesn't fit through the shape, then the wall will push them into the water. I watched a clip and it's actually really entertaining. The shapes in the wall are seemingly impossible to contort your body into but they still manage it (sometimes).

It kind of makes me want to play Tetris.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

How much do you like cheesecake?

I could really eat some cheesecake after a long run, but I don't think I could eat this much:

On February 21, 2004, Sonya Thomas ate 11 pounds of cheesecake in 9 minutes, a world record. She only weighs about 100 pounds, so that is 11% of her body weight! For reference a 10" cheesecake weighs about 4 pounds.

Here is an up-to-date list of all of her other amazing world records, including a recent victory of 46 mince pies in 10 minutes.

I don't think it would be a good idea to invite Ms. Sonya Thomas to Thanksgiving dinner.

Pumpkin Juice!

What is pumpkin juice, really?

And for that matter, does butter beer have alcohol in it (or is it like root beer only buttery instead of rooty)?

I always imagined pumpkin juice as liquid pumpkin pie, and everybody knows I love a good pumpkin pie, so as you can imagine when I saw that Silk makes 'Pumpkin Spice' I just jumped on it. It turns out, it's some sort of pumpkin-flavored soy milk. That doesn't sound all that good, but with some nutmeg it's actually quite tasty.

Has anybody tried Chocolate Silk? It's divine.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

2nd post for the day, whoa!!

I said in my earlier post that I probably wouldn't be in the mood to post after my ten-mile run and a full day of heinous paper editing. But, I was wrong. I'm in a much better mood to post now that it's over, and I probably shouldn't have posted before when I was all crabby because I was right in the thick of it all. But, as part of naBLOpoMO, now you will see that side of me too.

I'm posting so I can share with you all two things:

1. My new adoration of Goo. (The edible kind.) It's for runners (and probably other endurance sports) and provides you a shot of sugar and electrolytes when you're getting really depleted at the end of a crazy long run. And it's in the form of Goo so you can choke it down super easy when you'd really rather be throwing up. It comes in all kinds of flavors, with or without caffeine. For our first half-marathon, last spring, we didn't learn about it until just before the race so we didn't use it for training but did during the race itself. I thought it was very helpful but my Studly Hubby was pretty neutral. This time we thought we'd incorporate it into the training so we could really figure out how to use it for maximum benefit. So halfway through our run, we cruised through a running store and bought a bunch of Goo. This time my Studly Hubby loved it so much he had seconds. Our favorite is the Vanilla Bean. We got the one with caffeine and I think I might still be a little hopped up from it.

2. A funny exchange I had with my Studly Hubby after our crazy long run, which went something like this (it's kinda long, but is funny in several parts, so it's worth it):

Me (slyly): so, are there any kitchen items you might have been wishing for?
note: Christmas is coming up, for those of you who are still clueless
Studly Hubby (catching on with amazing speed): well... I would really like a grater... and an icing knife...
Me: Hrm, that's very interesting...
(note: I immediately rush to a notepad to write this down, for fear important information won't be retained, can't find notepad, gets on computer instead, and send a self-addressed email with the subject: ideas for D for Christmas)

2 hrs later...

Studly Hubby: hey! we should watch last Thursday's Office on msn.com
(note: yup, this is a blatant advertisement for the website my Studly Hubby helped make)
Me: ok! let me pull out my computer. Oh hey! I have an email! (pause) Oh shoot! you weren't supposed to see that!
Studly Hubby (laughing): don't worry, I forgive you...
Me: really?
Studly Hubby: yeah! my love for you is unconventional
(pause)
Studly Hubby: I mean, unconditional!

Note from me: I kinda like the unconventional kind too! I think...

Workin' Saturday

Usually I wouldn't post on my blog on a day like today, because the only fun part of my day will be watching Spiderman 3 tonight and eating pizza, and by the time I do that I probably won't be in the mood to post anyway. But, as part of my dedication to naBLOpoMO this month, I am going to post anyway.

Today was a big WORK day (working on a paper from grad school). As a break from all the work I am doing, I get to go run ten miles. We are about to head out right now actually. Sorry Eric, I know your schedule for me said to do 12-14 but I'm afraid that might kill me since 8 miles almost killed me last week. The half-marathon is in three weeks so we still have some time for more distance and hill runs.

The good news is, I made some progress on the paper and sent off some revised changes 5 minutes ago to my old boss in Minnesota to look at. Unfortunately that was only about 1/4 the total amount of work but at least it's something. It's been hard getting motivated to work on this, partly because it's on a project I stopped thinking about over a year ago and partly because the changes they want are of the most heinous variety: statistical recalculations, new graphs, tighter sentences, etc etc. Ugh. At least it's all easy to do from my remote location way over here in Seattle.

Friday, November 02, 2007

The Hives ROCK OUT


On Thursday night I couldn't post because I was busy rocking out at the Hives concert at the Showbox in the Sodo part of downtown.

They are a little band from Sweden that has gained some recent popularity (but they are still not expensive to go see). They put on a good lively show and we especially liked their quirky lead singer (above, in pink) who regularly climbed up the side of the stage and demanded that the audience clap and scream at him, which we did.

The lead singer Pelle Almqvist said some pretty funny stuff in between each of the songs (paraphrased of course, since my memory is horrible):

1. "I really love rock n' roll but don't listen to other rock n' roll bands as much anymore because I have become such a big fan of myself."

2. "You all may be wondering how you got so lucky to be here. Well let me tell you - this s**t's really happening man, I'm really up here and you are really listening to us."

3. "Do you want to dance really fast? Do you want to dance fast and listen to a fast rock n' roll song? Well now you can dance really fast because we're about to play some really fast rock n' roll!"

4. "All of you in the front are clapping and screaming but all the adults in the back need to clap and scream some more! I'm trying to bring all of you together man!"

Also on the 2002 MTV music awards the Hives lead singer Pelle Almqvist ended their set by saying "I know you want us to play more, but that's all the time we have so you can turn off now!"

We had such a good time that we didn't even mind staying out past 9 pm.

naBLOpoMO

So this month is naBLOpoMO and naNOwriMO. naBLOpoMO is National Blog Post Month and naNOwriMO is National Novel Writing Month. That's right (write), in November you are supposed to WRITE. Either write a novel or write in your blog. Either way, you are supposed to write every day.

So I missed a day already and it's only November 2 so I decided to ammend the rules a little bit and say that it's ok to skip a day if I post twice the next day.

So here I go, on naBLOpoMO...