Tuesday, December 30, 2008

On the move

The new site is up and functional, check it out here.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

An epic picture post

Despite both Josh and I suffering through nasty colds and a migraine (me), our Christmas was relaxing and stress free this year compared to previous years. I attribute it all to the fact that we didn't travel this year as we did in years past. Traveling over the holidays is a royal pain in the ass - it's expensive, the weather usually is horrible, people are crabby and nothing ever turns out the way people expect it to. For those reasons, I highly recommend staying at home and doing what we've been doing - sitting on our butts, eating naughty food and watching reruns of Star Trek. You just can't go wrong!

Santa was good to us this year. He brought teapots and tea, sports equipment and booze, purses, jewelry and tools.

We also got a yummy plate of Christmas cookies from Mr. & Mrs. Dorf.

Josh and I both noted how the gingerbread man had a eerily familiar stature. Ginger Dorf?

Ginger Dorf has a tasty head!

Since I've been sick for pretty close to two weeks, I haven't done an ounce of running. I've been looking at my new shoes longingly, though. I am gearing up to participate in a New Year's Eve Fun Run with a few people. It should be a really good time and a great opportunity to burn some calories and ring in 2009 with some guilt-free boozing!

Happy New Year, everybody!

Now this is annoying

Taken from www.sfgate.com

Michigan city bans being annoying in public

Ticking someone off could get you a ticket in one Michigan city. The Brighton City Council on Thursday approved an ordinance allowing police in the Livingston County community to ticket and fine anyone who is annoying in public "by word of mouth, sign or motions."

The Livingston County Daily Press & Argus of Howell reports the measure is modeled on a similar ordinance in the Detroit suburb of Royal Oak.

A city attorney says there could be situations where the measure would violate freedom of speech, but that those cases will be reviewed by the city.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Boring stuff I do when I'm sick

I came down with a nice little cold yesterday and my head feels like it's inside a bubble. Instead of moping around the house because I feel so crappy, I decided to put up my Christmas tree.

It's small, but it does the job. Since we're not traveling this year - can you blame us after last year's travel nightmare? - I thought it'd be nice to have a little something Christmasy.

That's about the most productive thing I've done today, besides blow my nose. Oh wait, I did the dishes. I'm on a roll.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Dueling snowblowers

We were only 30 minutes from being done with snow yesterday when Dorf came home. I thought that maybe he'd notice how close we were to finishing and not start his snow removal until we were done. WRONG.

The remaining half hour was spent mostly waiting for him. His snow blower has a top speed of 1 mph, and it kept on stalling. I'd been running my Yooper scoop doing cleanup, but I got the boot when Dorf decided to join in the fun. There's hardly enough room for two people out there, let alone three. So, I was able to sneak a few pictures while they were dueling.

Dorf chugs along, Josh waits

Dueling snowblowers

Eek! It's the abominable snowman! Pretty cute, no?

When we were finished, we made and ate dinner and watched a bit of tv and Dorf was STILL outside doing his snow. I think it took him 2 hours to finish.


Saturday, December 6, 2008

Score - Even

Woot! I evened up the score in the 09 GSRM yesterday. But now I think the joke's on me because everything I did yesterday has been negated by the 3" or 4" we got overnight. We're supposed to get a blizzard today, so it should be interesting to see total accumulation come Monday. Last year, we didn't have any significant snow until Christmas. Right now, we probably have close to 10" on the ground. I have a feeling it's going to be a very long winter.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

2009 Great Snow Removal Race

I have a neighbor named Dorf. That's actually not his real name, but he looks like Tim Conway's charater Dorf, so the name stuck. I also have another neighbor, Sarge. Again, not his real name, but he's a former Marine hence the name. My house sits between Dorf's and Sarge's house. The lots are narrow and our yards connect. Dorf and I share a driveway. Dorf has a snowblower, I use my trusty Yooper Scoop. Dorf never takes his snowblower out of first gear so he's painfully slow. Seriously, snow removal takes me 30-40 minutes, it takes him well over a hour. He also makes a mess of the yard, I might add.

Last year, I started to notice that every time I was outside scooping my snow, Dorf would also come outside and start doing his snow. Not a big deal, except that every time I got ahead of Dorf, he would have to wait for me to get done so that he wouldn't shoot snow on my head. Conversely, if Dorf was ahead of me, I would have to wait for him to get out of the way so I wouldn't have to push snow around him & his snowblower. We got home from work about the same time, so at first I just figured it was a coincidence that he would come out every time I was doing my snow. But then I started to notice that even on the weekends, he wouldn't go outside until I went outside. Then he got laid off and I thought that since he had all day to do his snow, he'd do it early in the day I wouldn't have to deal with him. Wrong! I would get home around 4:30, and start to put on my snow clothes and I would hear his snowblower start up. Every single time.

After a while, it became like a race. Leave work! Race home! Get dressed quickly! Hurry, must make it outside before Dorf!! This went on the entire winter.

Fast forward to today. We got quite a bit of snow overnight, so I knew I had snow to move when I got home. Just like clockwork, Dorf's snowblower started up as I was getting dressed. Instead of getting frustrated over it, I sat around for a hour waiting for him to finish. Then I decided to turn it into a little competition and thus the 2009 Great Snow Removal Race was born. Dorf was out before me today, so he gets a point. But, not to worry, I've got my spies to keep an eye on him. I'll even the score before long.

Today's tally: Dorf - 1, Me - 0

In other news, it's snowing and blowing like a mother outside. Nasty.


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Snowy night run

I have a 4:30 cut-off time for running during the winter.  If I don't get out of the house by that time at the latest, it ends up being too dark and I don't like to run in the dark.  When I got home at 5:00, I felt like I needed to burn off some frustration after a particularly aggravating conference call with one of our vendors (stupid vendor).

The neighbor I share a driveway with was out snowblowing when I left and when he saw me in my running garb, he gave me one of those looks that people give you when they think you're doing something insane.  Yeah, that look.  I just smiled and waved, which is what people do when they get that look.

I decided to stick to lighted streets only, and to my surprise, I was able to figure out a great route that took me through East Houghton, campus, and downtown Houghton.  It's mostly flat with with minor uphills, but if I want to run some hills, the route conveniently ends at the bottom of Sixth Street.  So, now I have no excuses to not run when it's dark because I can always take this route.  Yay!  (..or maybe not?)

Knock on wood, but my new Asics seem to be working out.  In the Mizunos, I always ended up with lower leg pain the day after a run.  When I ran, my push offs were especially tender.  Today I didn't have any issues whatsoever, and that's after a run the day before.  This is a very good sign.

Anyway, 3 miles @ 11:17

Weather report:  16 degrees/5 mph wind/3 degrees windchill/lightly snowing

First snowy run

I took my new shoes out for a spin last night.  I ran three miles from my house to work, then caught a ride home with Josh.  The shoes felt fine, although it was kind of hard to tell as I was wearing my YakTrax and running through ankle-deep snow almost the entire time.  My usual running path has converted to the snowmobile trail now that we have enough snow.  It doesn't make for a pleasant run - the surface is soft and squishy and I have to really pick my feet up to make it through, so my legs are really working hard.  I was happy to reach the parking lot and finish the last .75-mile on pavement and ended up with 3 miles @ 10:47.

When I got home, I did 20 minutes of weights, then 10 minutes of stretching and called it good.

While I was waiting for Josh in the parking lot, I discovered an old John Deere snowmobile somebody rode to work/school.  I don't know what year it is specifically, but I think maybe around 1972.  Anyway, I took a couple of photos as I thought it was funny how much these things have changed over the years.