I seldom have the time to post daily entries lately, so instead my loyal readers (both of you) will get to read a long rambling post consisting of all of the various topics that I’ve meant to blog about over the past week or so. I know. You’re excited. Try to contain your glee.


The spawn of my loins turned 4 this past Saturday. In traditional ritual celebration of the event, I chose to torture myself by inviting several spawn of other people’s loins to our house in order to enjoy a house full of over-sugared and over-stimulated spawn. Fortunately, said self-torture lasted only a couple of hours. My spawn enjoyed herself tremendously, all of the various spawn enjoyed the enormous blow-up jumpy thing we’d rented, and the parents of the spawn were all pleased that the event did not last overly long.

(Jack and I have now attended enough children’s parties that we’ve learned that one of the tricks to surviving that sort of thing is to NOT wait until the kids are tired/overstimulated/oversugared to do the cake/presents stuff. We started at 2, did cake/presents at 3, and by 4 the parents were gratefully bundling their bundles of joy off to their homes.)

In other equally exciting news, I’ve been having a great deal of trouble keeping up with my running lately thanks to an extremely persistent case of plantar fasciitis in my left foot. I’ve been through all the “home remedy” options (i.e. stretching, icing, anti-inflammatories, insoles,) and thought I had it conquered—especially when I had my forced 3-week layoff from running thanks to my gallbladder issue. But it came right back with a vengeance the first time I ran again. So, in the spirit of taking it to the next level, I bought higher-quality orthotic insoles, and I’m laying off the running again until I can go across the lake to the specialty running-shoe store where I can get professionally fitted for shoes. (Yes, seeing a doctor will be the next step, but I want to see someone who actually specializes in sports medicine so I won’t get the, “Stop running, wear insoles, ice your feet,” line. Yeah, been there. Now do something for me I can’t do for myself.)

And I’ve discovered something odd about myself. I actually like running. Oh, I know, what I call running would be heartily sneered at by purists. I mean, my pace is slightly over 11 minutes/mile fer cryin’ out loud and my weekly distance almost never tops twenty miles. But I try and go out at least three times a week, I don’t stop to walk, and I keep moving for 4-5 miles (and if my feet would ever frickin’ heal up I’d like to increase that distance considerably.) But on days when I run first thing in the morning, I feel good and really charged up for the rest of the day. It also gives me about 45 minutes of brain-clearing time which has proven to be valuable when I’m stuck with something in my writing. And, I’ve started to notice that those times when I lay off of the running either due to laziness or injury, my mood suffers a noticeable downturn (and the size of my ass suffers a significant upturn!)

So, as a stopgap measure, I bought a bicycle yesterday. It’s nothing fancy—just a mid-range bike for riding around the neighborhood. I bought two headlights (since I do my exercise long before sunrise) and a semi-fancy odometer/speedometer thingy, and this morning I strapped on my helmet and biked a measly 4 miles. And I learned a few things:

1) I haven’t done any serious (or even semi-serious) bike riding for about twenty years or so, and even though it comes back to you pretty quickly, I still nearly wiped out when I attempted to signal a turn with my left hand. Never let it be said that I am coordinated.

2) When it’s really dark, I can’t see the semi-fancy odometer/speedometer thingy which renders it pretty useless.

3) I’m probably going to need to do about triple the distance of my runs to get the same effect as far as caloric burn goes.

4) I really really need to learn how to shift.