It isn’t that I don’t like to run, it is that I have a limit. Yes, I did a crazy marathon, but it was nothing compared to what some people do. Ultra marathons do not seem sane. 100 miles or 130 miles does not sound even remotely like something I want to do, yet people go out and run these crazy things. One person says that their organs start shutting down on during one of these races. What kind of damage is that doing to your body? I was just watching a documentary about an insane one in which only fifteen people have ever finished. All I can ask is, why? Why put yourself through that? There has to be some screw loose in your head that makes you think it is something you want to attempt. I can see how some want to test the very boundaries of what can be humanly done. I can also see how it would be a thrill to challenge one’s self to meet such a challenge. I just think I will pass on that. I did my big thing, it was big for me, and that is quite enough. I am ok watching from my couch while others push the limits. After all, this cookie dough ice cream isn’t going to finish its self!
I was speaking at a church this last Sunday. It was a treat to share what I am passionate about, that is special needs. After my portion of the service was finished, I sat down to listen to the pastor. One of the things he brought up was that he didn’t like potlucks. I thought that was weird in that some churches including this one are known for potlucks. Some believe the service isn’t over until the potluck is done. I have never been a member of one of that kind of churches but, being a reformed fat guy, food is always a welcome thing and potlucks to me are the best form. Everyone tries to bring something to show up all the others who brought stuff and mayonnaise is usually one of the main ingredients in at least one casserole. What I am saying is, I like them. But this pastor did not. After lunch, while we were driving home my son told me that the pastor had explained to him why he was not a fan of potlucks. It seems at one a long time ago an older lady in the church offered the pastor one of the brownies she had made. When the pastor took a look at the brownie, it was covered in cat hair. I did not get much more information than that, but in my mind, I picture a little old lady handing him a small paper plate with a hairball mixed with brownie and this poor guy trying to figure out some way to ditch the brownie and yet not offend the person who was giving it to him. The thought of this moment still gives me a smile. This is a lot like life, isn’t it? We are always thinking the things coming our way are good things, but many of them are full of surprises, and not always the good kind!
A friend lent me a book we had talked about a while back. The book is “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall. This book is about a guy who loves to run but can’t figure out why his foot hurts. He seeks out some Indians in the mountains of Mexico who run barefoot, and he learns how to run like them, and everything is now wonderful, and he can run like the wind. I am happy for the guy, and this book has influenced a whole generation of runners, however, that is not me. When my friend handed me the book my comment was, I was not born to run; I was born to pull a cart. I am more like a mule. I would say a Clydesdale, but honestly, they are still too graceful to compare them to me. My running is more like mulish. I fear for any bug that falls under my shoes, it is definitely crushed. I compared my old running shoes to the new ones, and the heal looks like one of those toys you squeeze to watch their eyes bug out. I know it is a lot better than when I started, but I will never be a barefoot or fast runner. I am ok with that because I am not a “born to run” kind of guy. I am a born to eat kind of guy, so I will keep running.
Ever feel like someday they are going to replace you with a robot? Well, today feels like the day for me. I get an email from Amazon which tells me about things that are new and exciting. So today’s had a few things I was interested in learning more about one in particular. It is a Wireless Button Pusher. Yes, you or your boss can now complete the task of clicking OK, by remote. It reminds me of the Simpsons episode where Homer finds out he can work from home if he gets obese. He eventually becomes too tired even to push the button on the computer he is supposed to be monitoring, so he puts one of those glass birds filled with liquid to tip over and hit the button for him. Now the bird isn’t even necessary, just hit a button from somewhere over the internet and the job is done. Maybe this could be used to click one of those one click Amazon order buttons to have cookies or soap show up at my door. I think the only thing holding up my replacement is shipping, or perhaps they need a button that can smile or have a good attitude. That button’s invention might be a little farther away. So maybe I am safe for now!
If you go to the doctor and they get whatever you have wrong, and you have to go back again I think that visit should be free! I know I only pay my co-pay, but it annoys me when I have to do negotiations to get medicine. I get it, some people are in there every week looking for antibiotics and drugs. I have not been to my doctor in over three years. The last time I went in for something similar was six years ago. I am not a pill-seeking kind of guy, but when I have had a sinus problem for over two weeks, and I can’t breathe, you can give me something to help. Instead, they gave me a steroid which kept me up all night and some Flonase and sent me home. Now it has been three weeks, and I have moved on to home remedies, a nose blasting squeeze pot and all the over the counter decongestants I can take in a day. I would like to think it is getting better but I can’t tell over the salt burning that is now happening in my head! Note to self, make sure the salt packet is dissolved and well mixed in before you blast your brains out! With all the amazing cures and scientific breakthroughs I see in the news you would think that getting your nose not to run would have been cured a long time ago. Maybe it is more complicated than I think it is, or maybe it just isn’t that high on the “find a cure” waiting list.
It is March Madness time. That time of the year when friends ask me if I am filling out a bracket to which I explain why I will not. It is not as if I have never filled one out. I have worked at several places over the year where everyone did, and they would come by your desk every hour asking you if you were finished yet and wouldn’t leave you alone until you put it up on the wall. Then like it was some mystical creature people would stare at the wall of brackets looking and making comments about the choices people had made. Comments like, “what was Jeff thinking? That team has no chance to get to the round of sixteen let alone to the final.” Grown men sitting around prognosticating on a subject they are only less likely to actually be able to predict than the paid prognositators on TV. Every year it goes somethig like this, one team which by all accounts has no business playing that well, does. They go for a while and upset most everybodies brackets except one person who decided to fill one out based on cities they have visited or colors in state flags. They take it really far but in the end a very good team chocked full of players which will soon be in the NBA making more money than a basketball player should will win the whole thing, and they will be one of the hand full of teams which programs are always there. I would probably be more enthusiastic to be involved if teams from schools who never win anything had a chance, but it looks like it will just be another year of the same, so I will sit it out.
This morning at our team meeting my team got on the discussion of why so many conferences are in Las Vegas. One person said it has to be that there is always room for another conference there and they probably don’t charge a lot for the conference rooms because they know they are going to get a lot of money out of the attendees. I wondered, how many rooms are there in Las Vegas? According to Wikipedia, there are more than 60,000 hotel rooms on the strip! Holly Crud! That is a lot of rooms, and I could not have imagined that there are that many people staying in Vegas! Whether it was the mob or some other way in which that town got started, someone was a visionary to have dreamed that up. Think about it, you pull up to what was probably a couple of trailers and maybe a gas station, would you have looked around and said, yep this is the place where we are going to build a mega casino! I just looked it up. In 1920-1929 the population of Las Vegas was 2,304. How did it go from that to over 60,000 hotel rooms and a population of 603,488! I can tell you this much, in my wildest dreams I could not have ever come up with something as crazy as Las Vegas! I guess that is why people like Steve Wynn and others are stupidly rich, and I am typing up this blog during lunch!
I have come up with a few new drinking games, the problem with them is you will be drunk in about fifteen minutes if you play them.
First one is, every time they say Russia or the Russians on the Today Show you have to drink. I believe I counted twenty to thirty times in the first ten minutes this morning. If you are looking for quick results, this will do the trick! Heck, you could probably play it with any news program right now.
The second one, anytime the word amazing appears on your Facebook feed. Funny story, I use Grammarly to check spelling and grammar, and it underlined the word saying it is overused. Perhaps, but not like it is on Facebook!
Third, anytime the word “huge” shows up in a Harbor freight emails. Look I get it you have cheap tools, and I like going to your store and buying lots of the cheap tools, I don’t really believe every sale every weekend is Huge! If I wanted to get drunk thou, this one will work like a charm.
I have heard for years now about the snakes in Florida. If you haven’t, apparently for decades people have been dumping exotic snakes into the swamp when they got too big to care for, so the results are that these Python and Anaconda snakes are taking over the native species including the alligators and are a real problem. What I had never heard of until this week was the monkey problem. Apparently, in 1939 monkeys were used in Florida during the filming of a Tarzan movie in Florida. A local tour guide wanted to capitalize on the film’s success so he marooned six monkeys on a little island thinking he could keep them contained. What he didn’t know is that Rhesus monkeys can swim. These monkeys have reproduced over the years, and now there are more than a thousand of them roaming through Florida. Look, I am all for the guy making a little money for his swamp tour business, but this is ridiculous. All these years later wildlife officials have got a mess on their hands. Unlike the snakes, you can’t go out and start shooting them down, people hate snakes, and they love monkeys. You would have swarms of Greenpeace tree huggers running around in boats attaching themselves to trees and creating tent camps for year round protesting. On second thought, if they do this it will get them off of what ever cause they are fighting right now and get them all to move out of my state to Florida. I think I am OK with that. You won’t even have to shoot any monkeys, just declare the intention and watch the sparks fly!
This morning I was browsing my Facebook feed when I saw an article link saying Don Knotts had died. It seemed weird since usually when someone even slightly famous dies it is all over Facebook, but this was one story. So I clicked on the link which took me to CBSnews website, and I looked at the date. The article was from 2006. So between the “massive announcements” of nothing, the love or hate of our President, the giraffe, Amazon ads and cute animals, we needed a story from 2006? It is getting to the point where Facebook has “jumped the shark” The only thing keeping me on here is the pictures family are putting up. Since I no longer live close to most of them, it is the only way I get to keep up. I don’t use it to follow celebrities, I do keep up with a few bands, but they are the ones on the “Classic Rock” stations, mostly to find out how many of them are still alive! I know they are trying to get the goofy stuff off, but I think it is impossible. Just like my junk mail, I am still getting offers for Russian brides and male enhancement drugs. Now thou, they just go to a folder that I look at from time to time to make sure nothing I wanted gets caught in it. Maybe in the future there will be a junk feed on Facebook for all that stuff.