Sunday, November 30, 2008

Long weekend is almost over

Well, I was fortunate enough to have Friday off, so I netted a 4 day weekend. Superb!

I didn't do so well running this past week, though.

I did run Monday (with a swim there too). Tuesday, I gave blood (5:22 time, not a PR, but respectable), so no running that day. (I did get a gallon marker pin though. whoo!)

Wednesday, I don't remember where that went.

Thursday was full of family obligations, of course. I did some reflection during the time and was genuinely thankful of many things.

Friday, I did get out and ran *outside*. Amazing. So much more fun. It was nice being off so that I could run in the daylight. I put in 5 miles there, with a decent hill in the middle. Plus, my gym month's membership was up, so I delayed paying the next month's coin for a bit.

Saturday, I was the ultimate lazy bum, and didn't do much of anything but play video games. Hah. Oh, wait, no. I did get caught up on 'Prison Break'. They could have ended it. They could have had everything wrapped up, and people would have been happy. But nooooooooooooo. The writers/producers/TV people/whomever had to be greedy to make this show go on and on. Sigh.

Today was more family things. My newest nephew was baptized, so we went to the ceremony and the family get-together afterward.

And that was my week. What a blur. A good one, though.

So yeah, I was a lazy bum for exercise. But, my legs were really bothering me early in the week. I hope with the amount of rest I got, that I'll be ready to go this week. We'll see tomorrow......

Keep on rockin'!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tiring work out

Well, I tried something different yesterday. I wanted to run 5 miles, but my legs were sort of not up for it. I did 3 on the treadmill, and probably could have continued, but decided to play it safe (which is good, because my legs are really creaky today).

I think it was 'The Transporter 2' on TV.. seen it before, but amusing enough to pass the time.

I finished my 3, and then went in the pool.

I did 18 laps, a half mile.

Let me tell you something. I was just out of gas by the end. I wasn't out of breath, but I was struggling with the swim. Do a lap, take a pause. Repeat.

I can see why they do the swim first in a triathlon. Chuckle.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Saturday at the gym

Went to the gym Saturday, and battled through 8 miles. It went like this.

- 3 miles on the treadmill.

At about 2.5 miles in, some guy came onto the treadmill immediately to my right and turned the TV on. With the volume all the way up. Thanks.

I said, "OK, this is getting dull", and went upstairs to the indoor track.

- 1 mile there.

So there, a mother decided that the indoor track was the perfect place to let her kids run around. Super.

Having had enough of that, I ventured back downstairs to a different treadmill.

- 2 miles there.

Nothing exciting to report, but I was really bored. I had been watching college football (no team preference, sorry), but everything was in halftime at that point.

Went back up to the track.

- 1 mile

The panter was there. Pant pant pant. Run run run. Pant pant pant. I could hear this guy 10 lengths in front or behind him. OK.. he's out there at least. But, he's in the same category as the grunter in the weight room, if you ask me.

After finishing that 15 laps, also mind numbing, I went to do my hip adduction/abduction.

Went back out to the track, and did

- my last mile.

Ugh. The cellphone guy was there. Yack yack yack. Loud loud loud.

They were all out at the gym that day. Oh well. Got through the 8, in not the most contiguous fashion, but they were completed.

Sunday was a rest day, and I'm debating what to do tonight. I wanted to run 5, but I'm feeling a bit creaky, so maybe it will be 3 and a swim or something.. We'll see.

Keep on rockin' everyone.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Various Miscellany

I worked out Wednesday, but it was a struggle. I did 2 miles on the treadmill and was just dying.. My legs felt awful and abused. I went and did the bike for 20 minutes, and wound up with 5.74 miles done.

Afterward, I hopped on the treadmill and did another mile, and called it a day. I wanted to do 5, but this seemed like a good compromise.

I also opted to take Thursday off, just to rest. Friday is a rest day by default, as tonight is the last night of dice baseball. The world series, baby! We'll see how it goes. Should be fun, at least.

I tried out a couple of new (to me) gins last night. Found these little bottle at the liquor store, and decided to give them a go.

First up is Tanqueray Rangpur. Tanqueray makes a very good gin to start, and the No. 10 is in my top 3 of gins. I decided to give the Rangpur a go, just for something different. It claims to have some extra citrus type things mixed in the flavor, so I said, "hey, why not?".

You'll note in the picture that I didn't put any limes in the gin. If it had extra citrus, I wanted to be able to taste it purely. Taking a sip, you definitely could taste extra things. It was as if lime juice had been mixed into the gin. The usual taste of juniper was heavily masked. Even the scent of it was very faint.

That being said, it was still very smooth. There was no need to add any limes to the gin & tonic, though.

I'd say it was good, but more of a gin for non gin drinkers. The usual bouquet that I look for was highly masked. I wouldn't turn it down, but I wouldn't hunt for it, either.

The next gin I tried was New Amsterdam.

I also started this one off without limes, just to get a taste for it. Looking at their website, it states "so smooth you can drink it straight."

Uhm, no.

Not so much.

It had more of a classic gin scent to it, but it had a fair amount of bite and it felt like a high amount of alcohol (it doesn't.. just a standard 40% ABV).

I added some limes to cut the bite, and it was better.

That being said, no, I wouldn't buy this one again. But, it certainly wasn't the worst I ever had.

I've tried a fair number of gins, and the ones I really like are:

I also don't mind Beefeater, as it's a decent gin for a budget price. The newfangled Beefeater "Wet", however.. that stuff is absolutely disgusting. Tastes like paint thinner. Expensive paint thinner, too. That stuff was by far the worst tasting gin I've ever had. Mr. Boston tasted like sweet nectar compared to this stuff.

Alright, that's enough gin for now.

I really should get to work.. keep on rockin' everyone. Have a good weekend.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

TIART - Thank Goodness for Running

Today's theme for Take It and Run Thursday is sharing reasons why you are thankful for running.

I'll do that, but also head in a slightly different direction.

Certainly, I am thankful for running. It's an escape. A chance to unwind. A chance to collect my thoughts. A chance to improve myself on a number of levels.

I also am thankful that I am able to run. That my health is such that I can, and can do so often.

What I really need to work on is that there is so much in my life to be thankful for, yet I sometimes get hung up on small pieces that didn't go quite right.

Sure, we've all got some legitimate bitch and gripe about something serious that has happened which is unfair. An unexpected medical condition. An untimely death in the family. Etc.

But to gripe because my Garmin didn't sync up with the satellites fast enough, or I only did 6 miles instead of 8, or other things like that.. those aren't real complaints. They're not really even worth voicing.

I have shoes on my feet that are under 300 miles old. I have clothes on my back that are in good condition. I can run to and from a roof over my head. I can eat & drink when I get back. All of those things right there are plenty to be thankful for.

Never mind the luxuries like the couple of nice wicking running shirts I have. Or the Garmin watch to track my mileage. Or the fact that I can sit down at a computer and blog about a run.

I have a wonderful family, a great group of friends, and I have all of the necessities of life, and more.

There's a lot to be thankful for, and it's important not to lose sight of that. Not only in running, but in life.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Why is Treat Williams in the pool?

Last night I went swimming. Wanted to give my legs a bit of a break, but still get a workout in.

There's 3 lanes in the pool, and you can fit 2 people per lane comfortably. Small pool, I know.

So, I took the middle lane. There was a guy in the left lane. The right lane was open.

So, I had finished about 3 laps, and a guy yells down, "Mind if I share your lane?"

Uhmm.. okaaaay... What about that wide open lane next to me?

So, I'm going back and forth, and back and forth. After I'd done a half a mile, the guy stops me. Looking at him, he looked a lot like Treat Williams. Granted, I have to wear glasses to see anything past a book I'm reading. And I have a bit of chlorine in my eyes. But, it really did look like him.

He proceeded to give me some swimming tips, indicating that my head was too far up while swimming, that my butt needed to be higher. I was also breathing improperly, as I wasn't rolling very smoothly.

Yeah.. Well, I'll give him that.

So, I did a couple of more laps, trying to keep my head down.. I think it helped, but my butt just doesn't float like that. I dunno. Probably a good thing, but still.

After a couple of laps, he stopped me for an update on how it felt. Better, I suppose. He then went into all of the things he *used* to do, but doesn't now. He just swims. Easier on the body.

I told him I was using swimming to cross train instead of running. That's when his credibility dropped.

He proceeded to inform me of how bad running was for you, and that you should just walk fast instead. Yadda yadda.

I didn't really want to get into a lively debate with him, plus I didn't need him turning into The Substitute and whoopin' me, so I just let him go on.

In the end, I finished up with 27 laps, just over 3/4 of a mile.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Big glasses and such

Found this glass at a closeout sale. My kind of size. Of course, I couldn't buy it as it was still a lot of dough.

Went to the gym last night.. Like most of the day, it was a battle. I started off with a 'hill workout' on the treadmill. It occurred to me that a hill workout on the treadmill is more of a series of uphills and plateaus, as opposed to up and down. Oh well.

It was the hill that never ended. Geez.

I did 20 minutes of that insanity, and then felt a sharp pain in my knee. I stopped that and switch to a flat workout, and finished off at a total of 3 miles. I went up to the indoor track and did 15 laps (one mile). Did my hip adduction/abduction and then did another mile. Called it a day.

I felt immensely better afterward. Glad I went to work out. I feel a bit funny in my knee today, so I may take the day off, or I may just swim.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Wow.. Monday is flying by

Yeah, I just got done flying through my RSS reader. Sorry to all that I didn't get a chance to read and make an insightful comment.

The plumber came Friday and spent almost 2 hours fixing the valves. I'm glad I didn't bother trying to do that myself, because that would have been a whole weekend just *gone*.

Dice baseball was a success.. We played the 'divisional' and 'league' championship series. I survived both and will be playing in the world series on Friday. Whoo hoo!. Not bad, first time player, getting to the W.S.

For those that missed the original short, non-descriptive text about what dice baseball is, it's this. A bunch of guys sitting around, drinking beer, managing a team of baseball players, where the game is pretty much decided by rolls of the dice, with a tad bit of baseball strategy mixed in.

It's actually kind of fun, but some guys get waaaaay too serious about it. I just like to kick back and talk baseball and such.

On Saturday, I did get out to the gym to try again on my 8 miler. It was a smashing success. I set up the treadmill at a constant 5.7 mph and plugged away. Only annoying part was that the treadmill went into 'cool down' mode after an hour. I thought about continuing, but decided against it after 8.

Sunday, I felt pretty good.. muscles were a little tired, but nothing crippling. I obviously had some rubbing between my toes, so there's a little bit of rawness going on down there, unfortunately.

I'm going to the gym tonight to do another running workout, hopefully.

OK, all.. Sorry this is short.. more tomorrow.. Keep on rockin'.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Made it to Friday.. Big stuff today. Called in the big guns to finish up my plumbing work. I decided I wasn't going to replace the shutoff valves on my own, so I'll be paying someone for their services. *shrug*

Hit the gym last night.. I had wanted to do 8, but didn't make it there in time. Plus, the treadmill I was on wasn't as cushion-y as some of the others, and my leg (with the ITBS issues) was bothering me some. And, I ran out of beverage at mile 5. All of the factors together added up, and I abandoned the plan.
So, I did 5 there, and 1 on the track. 6 miles, not too bad.

I'm going to take today off, and try again tomorrow for the 8.

Tonight is dice baseball.. playoff version. Last week I officially made it into the playoffs, but barely. I really backed into it, going 1 and 5 (against the bottom 2 teams). But, it was enough to get me in.

First series is against my friend that brought me into the league... heh.

Alright everyone.. keep on rockin'!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

TIART - Running Green

So, the theme today for TIART is Running Green.

Not to rip off tfh, but I'm going to throw myself as somewhere "in the middle".

I buy new running sneaks every 300 miles or so, but I do try to use my old ones as "every day" shoes.

I have bought running shirts & shorts, but I also use my old t-shirts and shorts (those certainly aren't as nice to run in).

I do refill water bottles from the tap, but I also go and drink new bottles of Gatorade style stuff.

I'm certainly more willing to go walking a long distance to get somewhere, but there really isn't much around to walk to.

So yeah, I'm in the middle. I'm all for doing things that are green, but it just doesn't always happen, for any number of reasons.

I think that running has made my healthier, hopefully cutting down on medical costs & equipment, which should be a green thing. I do things like lots of recycling, using a programmable thermostat, etc.

But really, I think there's probably more things I could do, like buying packets of Gatorade mix & making my own. Trying to bike to more places. The list goes on.

We should all try to be a little greener.

Look out Michael Phelps

.. Here I come!

Yeah, OK. Maybe not.

The other day I picked up some swim goggles, and I was itching to try them out.

Furthermore, I went out on the web and was searching around for "swimming tips". I figured, hey, I learned a heck of a lot about running by going around and reading advice, blogs, etc.. I suspect there is probably a swimming community out there.

So, after a good, oh, 2 or 3 minutes, I found this video out on YouTube. It goes over 4 common swimming mistakes. I'm sitting there watching the video and thinking to myself.. "uh oh". I suspected I made all 4 mistakes.

So, I hopped in the pool last night and did a quick half lap of normal freestyle swimming. Yep. I made all 4.


But, the goggles worked great. I spent the time at the pool working on my form, doing about half of my laps freestyle, the rest doing different strokes. It really is surprisingly more efficient to swim as the video instructs.. Not over-reaching, not reaching across the body, keeping your head down. I was tired, but nothing like before.

I wound up doing 25 laps, putting me a little under 3/4 of a mile.

I suspect Michael Phelps doesn't need to go to YouTube for training tips. *chuckle*

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Free Coffee

See, you're excited.. Free coffee! What's not to like?

Yes, I received an e-mail at 11:30AM, Monday morning, with the subject line of "Free Coffee This Week!"

(Normally, I'm not a fan of the exclamation point in the subject, but "free coffee" warrants an exception.)

So, yes, we did indeed have free coffee. We're trying out this new coffee brewing system from Keurig. It has these "K cups", which are little plastic (more on that later) cups, containing enough grounds for a single cup of coffee.

You put your K cup in the machine, put your mug in underneath, hit the button, wait 30 seconds, and your coffee is done.

Unlike our little pod coffee maker at home, this is pretty hot coffee when it comes out, too.

The flavor of the coffee was really good. Most of our samples were 'Green Mountain Coffee', and were quite tasty. Far better than the swill that you can get from the vending machine or from the "cafeteria".

Plus, the water sometimes runs funny colors here. Yellow.. brown.. Makes you second guess about drinking.

The only downside to the K cups is that they seem to be very non-green. They're all individual plastic containers with tinfoil over the top, and you throw them into the garbage. Not green.. I'm not too big of a fan of that. (At least with the pods, I think they'd biodegrade pretty easily)

So yeah.. I was stoked. It was like having free drugs here.

So, at 2:30PM on Wednesday afternoon, I go over for another cup. All gone. I'm sad.

I guess we'll see how well the trial went over, and if people will pay for this.

1 mile

Yep.. Did one mile on the treadmill last night.

Of course, that was after doing 10.8 miles on the bike. In half an hour.

Now, I don't kid myself to think that I was really going ~21 mph for 30 minutes yesterday. I figure the bike calculations are a bit off.. But, I was going like hell.

Just wanted to work a different set of muscles from the usual running set. Plus, I had an hour until the pool opened for lap/adult swim.. so, on the bike I went!

And, just for giggles, I did a mile at 6.25mph on the treadmill, to see what that would feel like. Let me tell you, the first third of a mile, it really didn't feel good at all.

Later that night, I went and picked up these.. a pair of swim goggles. I'm hoping to try them out tonight.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Treadmill & new beer

I went to the gym and banged out 4.21 miles on the treadmill over 40 minutes. Averaged 6.2/6.3 per mile until the last mile, where I kept knocking the pace up every tenth of a mile. All in all, not too bad.

I felt a little bad while there.. there was a woman who got on the treadmill next to me.. I saw that she had some intricate ink on her back/shoulders/arm.. I'm hoping she didn't think I was a lecherous man.. I was just trying to see what her tattoos were of. Oh well.

I did my hip adduction/abduction machine while there, too. Of course, as par for the course, the grunter was there working out in the weight room. You know, the guy that tries to lift more than he should and is grunting after every rep. Seems that some incarnation of him always is there in the weight room.

That was it.. short workout.

Afterward, I went to my brother-in-law's place and tried out Yuengling's Porter. Not a bad porter at all. Dark chocolate flavors with some malt taste, but not really heavy. It complemented the pile of wings we had very well.

Monday, November 10, 2008

The ol' pump faucet

Pretty quiet weekend, really.

We've had this faucet sitting in a box for a couple of months that I've been meaning to install. Of course, I just haven't gotten to it.

Saturday, I had the brilliant idea of putting it in.

So, I shut the shutoff valves off, proceeded to unplumb the old one, and then ran into a snag. I couldn't get the old one off. The stupid plastic nuts on the bottom didn't have anything to hold on to, and I couldn't get one of them unscrewed.

Yeah, ok. Big deal.

Of course, one of the shutoff valves then started to really not be shut off. And it just got worse from there. I shut the water off completely to all sinks, toilets, and everything plumbing related, and proceeded to fight with the old faucet for an hour. Eventually, I got it off, after resorting to drills, chisels, and other tools not normally found in a plumber's toolbox.

Joe the plumber I am not.

So, I put the new one in (it does look like the one in the picture). Started installing a new trap.. yep. Forgot to get an extension tube. This sink is stupid and wasn't really put together right. Super. One trip down to Home Depot later (where Christmas is apparently in full season, thank you very much)...

Got the trap/drain all done, turn the water supplies back on.. and......

No hot water. Super.

I figure that shutting off the valve got it stuck in the 'almost off' position. Not quite "off", as it can still leak water at a decent rate all over.

Totally fricken awesome. So, we have cold water. It's going old school, back to the pump, ala this faucet style.

I wasn't about to fart around with putting in a new shutoff valve after this fiasco. Plumber is coming Friday.

So, Saturday was wrecked after all of that, and I didn't get out to swim, run, bike, do jumping jacks, or anything like that. I did make about 800 trips up and down stairs, though, so that's got to count for something.

Sunday I did get out and do 21 laps in the pool, so that was nice. I am humbled by the other swimmers though.. I'm struggling to do a whole lap with freestyle crawl, and they go back and forth and back and forth. Sigh. I mix it up with different strokes so I can work different muscles. Yeah, that's it.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Favicons Downloader - 0.30

In case anyone cares, I created a new version of my Firefox plugin - Favicons Downloader. (Info on the old version is here.)

You can find it in the Experimental Sandbox or at SourceForge.

New exciting features are:
- Background downloading support
- Updates bookmark icons in the 'Bookmarks Toolbar', as well as the standard bookmarks menu

There's a few bug fixes and minor items.

It's a 'Use at your own risk' sort of piece of software.. :) Seems to work OK for me and for others, but it is just a side project.

I actually nominated it for public usage, but I was turned down because no external website had reviewed it. I guess I understand that, but it stinks. Chuckle.

Alright.. I'm out.

Thursday night and other goodies

I went to the gym Thursday night and did a treadmill workout. I wound up doing 5 miles on the hamster wheel. The first 4 were at 6mph. The last one was gradually increased up to 6.6mph.

After a couple of weeks of doing treadmill workouts, I do find that they are easier on my legs than the sidewalk, without a doubt. The other benefit of being in the gym is that I can use the hip abduction/adduction machine. I'm hoping that doing that will help with my ITBS issues.

The only downside with the gym is that it's sauna hot in there. My t-shirt was completely soaked all the way through. Disgusting, I know. Sorry for the imagery. I'd like to work up to doing long runs there, but man. Wow. I went through my water bottle in 5 miles. The gear needed for something like a 15 mile run.. Blah. I can't imagine. Well, I can. But, I dread it. Running back to the locker room for a new bottle every 4 miles. Or, I could keep a cooler by the treadmill. ;)

I also did some real pushups last night. I wound up doing 50 real pushups (in a row). First time I tried since I broke my elbow. I'm really happy I didn't revert all the way back to 0. I'll probably not jump right back onto the 100 pushups thing, but maybe in a month or so.

On an exciting note, I mailed off my last bill payment for my broken elbow this morning. I'm glad to have that all behind me. A hell of an expensive mistake, but what can you do?

Alright everyone.. keep on rockin'!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Minor update

Lots of rinky-dink posts today.. why not.

In an update to the house demolition, the grass has been seeded, and hay is being put down now. Incredible.

TIART - Running Transitions

This is the first week I've participated in Take It and Run Thursday over at Runner's Lounge. Long time lurker, first time poster.

I suppose transitions were what brought me to running. A couple of years ago, I went through a terrible loss, and was going through internal discussion with myself, self-discovery, etc.

I had been friends with my current running buddy for a few years and was somewhat envious of her running ability. At the time, my past experiences with running had been, well, awful. I ran cross country in middle school for one season and hated it. I ran track for a part of a season until some irreconcilable differences came up between myself and a "team" mate.

Looking back to that time years and years ago, I realize I just wasn't at a point where I mentally could do the running.

In my self discovery time, something came over me that yes, I would like to give it a go. Part of it was just so I could go running with my running buddy and hang out with her. Part of it was so that I could improve my health & fitness.

I "ran" for the first time in years, and realized all that it could do for me. I was mentally at a point where I understood it all, and realized all that running could do for me, and I've kept with it since.

So, transitions brought me to running. New transitions that come along don't really pull me away. In fact, running helps me. If something is really bothering me, I go out and run. I can run off some of the stress and am better off for it. (Now, if only I could run an hour and a half every day!)

Remember, remember, the Fifth of November

Sigh. It was November 5th yesterday.

I usually make a point of watching V for Vendetta on 11/5. It is Guy Fawkes Day after all.

Of course, I'm not from the U.K., so it really doesn't have significance to me, any more than, say, Cinco de Mayo.

But, I always liked 'V for Vendetta'

But.. I forgot. Didn't watch it. Didn't do much of anything after work, honestly. I played 'Pain' on the PS3, and my wife and I went through a couple of levels on 'Lego Star Wars'. Nothing too noteworthy...

Blog spam!

Very exciting stuff.. real live blog spam. Here, on my blog. I've arrived.

While I really do enjoy lingerie of all types, the blatant ad just isn't doing much for me. It's all text based, too. C'mon.. give me something to tease me. It does claim to hold 'sexy' and 'hot' lingerie at the web site, so that's something.

In addition, not only does the website have 'costumes', it has 'sexy costumes'. I'd love to see the differentiation there.

The other noteworthy category is 'fantasy lingerie'. I suspect the store has no grasp on what my fantasies are, but you never know.

Updated to remove the link

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I've been watching a house near where I work be torn down today. It was up in its entirety this morning (even around 9:30am). Here it is, not quite 4:30, and it's been completely removed. Foundation and all.


Election Day Workout

On the way home, I picked up my wife and we went and voted. The polling place was more crowded than I'd ever seen it, but I only had a wait of 6 people ahead of me in my district. Not bad.

I went to the gym and did a workout.. Wound up doing 2 miles on the treadmill, followed by a mile on the track. I also did a few weight machines (hips, abs, lower back).

On the way out, I ran into my running buddy, and I proceeded to do 15 on the stairmaster.

(Of course, during all of this, I was glued to the election coverage).

Anyway, I went home, got cleaned up, and got ready for the main event.. the real election coverage.

My running buddy came over, and her and my wife watched some soaps and then watched their wedding videos together.. I checked in periodically, doing double duty between the two TVs.

I can't say that I ever really got into election coverage as much as I did yesterday.

Wow.. it was historic, that's for sure.

I watched McCain's speech, and figured that I may as well stay up to watch Obama's.

The election "season" is finally closed, and I'm really looking forward to what will happen over the next four years. For those of you who went out and voted, awesome. For those of you who didn't.. tsk tsk.

I'm kind of whipped today from staying up late and watching the TV. Hopefully I'll get a swim in tonight, but we'll see.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Gym workout

Long day at work yesterday. I went to the gym and worked off the stress.. Wound up doing 3.5 miles on the treadmill.. (one mile @ 6mph, 1 @ 6.1, 1 @ 6.2). Then, did a little over a mile on the indoor track, ending with a sprint lap.

Finally ended on the stairmaster for 10 minutes of hell. I ran into my running buddy there, also on the stairmasters, so at least I had someone to chat with.

I'm hoping to hit the pool tonight, after going out to vote, of course.

Election Day

It's election day here in the U.S. It's been coming a long long time. I'll be glad to see it over.

I haven't felt as charged up as I am ever in a presidential election (or any election for that matter).

I must say though, this whole electoral college thing seems crazy to me. I understand, back in the day, people weren't as well informed, etc etc. Any more now, though, we have 24/7 news coverage on everything - from politics to what celebrity wore what while dating whom.

I think it would be neat if everyone got a vote, you tallied up the numbers, and that was it. I live in a non swing state, so we get very little attention paid to us. Not that I'd go to a political rally, but.. it's the concept. It seems so strange that in New York or in California, if the vote was 51%/49%, all of those electoral votes would go towards one candidate. The 49% would have more votes that some entire states.

I also realize that both major political parties try to use the electoral college system to their advantage. The work different angles to get the votes. So, the odds of it changing are slim. Doesn't mean I like it.

Anyway, if you're eligible to vote, and you're informed, get out there and vote. Doesn't matter who you vote for, just go and vote.

As I told someone who wasn't planning to vote.. if you don't vote, you can't complain about who was voted in.

Alright folks.. keep on rockin' the vote..

Monday, November 3, 2008

New beers from the weekend

My brother in law was kind enough to hook me up this weekend. I spent a good amount of time there, just hanging out, and he did me a solid.

First up was Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale. Sorry for the bad pic.

It's labeled as a brown ale.. I'm going to say it's much closer to a stout or porter. There's a lot of similar flavor to a Guinness, but it's not as dark. There's a lot of malt & molasses flavor. It's got a decent kick, too, at 7.2% ABV.

Turns out there's a whoop of calories per beer there. I enjoyed it, but wouldn't have it every time.

The other beer I was hooked up with from him was the 60 Minute IPA from Dogfish Head. This was an excellent hoppy IPA. I like the 90 minute version slightly better, but 60 minute was quite good. This beer had a citrus scent too it, but you'd have a hard time picking it out from the hop smell and taste.

My wife had me smell a few things this weekend (candles and such). My sniffer just isn't very good. Many scents seemed familiar, but I just couldn't nail them down. Sigh. I probably won't ever be able to be an expert beer reviewer as a result.

Last beer I tried was something I picked up at the grocery store. This was Post Road Pumpkin Ale. Post Road is part of the Brooklyn brewery, which produces some really good beer. It's late to the Pumpkin Roundup, but I figured.. "why not?" :)

The Post Road is similar to the Saranac pumpkin. Interesting flavor, and a decent head to it. The color is a bit more orange, and the finish is a bit nicer. I really enjoyed this beer.

Weekend workout

My great goals for working out this weekend were just squashed due to logistics. Oh well. Even with an extra hour, I couldn't get everything in.

I had originally planned to go to the gym Saturday morning and work out. I stepped outside, realized how warm it was, and proceeded to do my run outside. I managed 4.25 miles at an 8:58 pace. Not too shabby.

Only interesting (and frightening) thing I saw was this.. While running downtown, I saw a guy in a motorized power chair/scooter thing. He was driving it down the street. A busy street. Main Street, in fact. He was riding with traffic.
On my way back, I wound up passing him. I'm running on foot at my ~6.5 mph pace on the sidewalk. If I was running in the street, I'd be running against traffic.

I dunno.. I felt worried about him, that he should be up on the sidewalk.

Sunday, I had planned to go swimming, but it just didn't happen. Oh well. I did pick up a copy of 'Lego Star Wars' for $20, though. :)