[code"> [/code"> Courtenay Brown: January 2008

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Greg is good at dunking. I am O.K. at photographing him doing it.

I am good at utilizing our [overabundant] natural winter-y resources - I am still feeling the aftereffects of a. my victory in last week's standing-on-one-foot contest and b. my run on Monday.

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Progress on New Year's Resolutions

I never actually blogged about any resolutions, but I did indeed make a few. Do more artwork (specifically, at least a painting and a card a month), do my own bike maintenance (specifically, learn to replace cables myself), and the usual general "keep the apartment clean", "be nice", "don't eat too much or too little", etc.

It's been nearly a month, and I don't know how the crap I am so busy but I have gotten nothing accomplished! Argh! I have picked up my pencils on several occasions, but pens and paints keep getting put off till the weekend or the rest week or some time that is not the evening of a long tiring day. The good news is inspirational momentum is building, so I am thinking there will (with perhaps some caffeination?) be a breakthrough.

As for the bikes... well, I do have one major excuse, which is the lack of a bike stand. My rear derailleur cable is distinctly on its way out, I have limped through my last few workouts by periodically twisting the barrel adjuster and being flexible about my gearing choices, but after a thorough fix-it attempt last night I had to say "uncle". So I tromped over to the Village Ski Loft today, hoping that since they sell mountain bike stuff in the summer time, someone might be able to help me. The ski guys were like "dude, um, I don't know WHAT to do with a BIKE." But thankfully there is a guy there named Elko who said he could replace my cables!

Poor sad cold little bike, it looked so out of place next to all the skis and snowboards.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Update on the Fish Felon

Stupidhead is in solitary confinement, in my Brita pitcher. She is not in the fridge, although I was tempted. I set her up right next to the good-fish tank, with my spare aquarium heater and thermometer.


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Monday, January 28, 2008

Trouble in Paradise

Stupidhead is in big trouble. If I were mean, I would flush her, but I am not so I am going to try to talk a local pet store into trading me two nice little fish for my ginormous, "healthy" monster. She is in big trouble.

Sweetie is MISSING A FIN and I KNOW it is Stupidhead's fault. Unfortunately for Sweetie, weather reports indicate that I might not make it to the store in Truckee until next week, so in the meantime I am going to be rearranging the plants and telling Greg to stop laughing at me.

Relatedly, we thought we lost the cat this morning. I looked for him for a good 15 minutes, he wasn't in any of his usual places (and by the way I continue to be baffled at how easy it is to lose things in the world's smallest apartment). Then I opened the linen closet door:Look how cute!

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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Probably For the Best

Today was an "it's probably for the best" sort of day, for a couple of reasons. Meaning, initial freakouts were followed by slightly more mature and introspective "oh, right, phew" moments.

Reason one is fairly run-of-the-mill - today we got hit with 5 inches of wet snow and a lot of wind. The power was out at the gym, so the pool and treadmills were inaccessible for my 1 hr swim and 1 hr 20 run... Shortened to a 0 hr swim and a 30 min run outside on my new Yak Trax sneaker things. I intended to do the full run outside, but the winds were at nearly 30 mph with gusts of 60 in places, it was snowing, and while the Yak Trax definitely improved my traction, running in today's snow was like running in deep sand, so I switched over to the cleared pavement in the road, but then I felt like the functionality of my shoes was compromised by the Yak Trax, sorry for the run-on sentence about this run-of-the-mill running story but that's totally what happened. So anyhow with sore ankles, a windswept face, and cold feet, I headed home, leaving this week's long run for tomorrow. I didn't complete my planned hours for the week, but I don't mind the outcome: a little extra rest, and time to drag Greg down to the crazy looking beach and take photos! Can you believe this is Lake Tahoe? It looks like the Pacific Ocean! Maybe I should have tried to do my swim outside too...

Today I also learned that registering for a triathlon is distinctly NOT like registering for a bike race, and should not be approached lackadaisically. I never entered any bike race more than 2 or on rare occasions 3 weeks in advance, but this morning I decided to register for my intended first triathlon of the season, Oceanside 70.3, which is over 2 months away, and it's full! Freakout commenced, because my main goal for the 2008 season is to qualify for my Elite license (tri-speak for Professional, for all you non-geeks out there), and Oceanside is one of the Elite qualifiers.

I felt like such a retard, for a few minutes anyway. But it's actually definitely for the best. For one thing, with all this winter weather we are having, I don't know that I'll feel ready for a half-ironman at the end of March. For another thing, the 70.3 races are run by the Ironman Corporation. I don't really agree with the company's values or philosophies, so I am actually glad not to be giving them any of my money.

Anyhow here are the photos Greg and I snapped of each other at the windy beach during our freezing 30 second visit!

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Warm weather ride!

Today Greg and I drove 90 miles to Auburn so we could ride our bikes outside. It's been snowing here all week, only an inch or less per day, but it's cold enough and precipitating enough to be treacherous and nasty for a four hour ride outdoors, and we only have one trainer so indoors was a non-option.

It was 50 degrees in Auburn, I didn't even need a jacket! That was a definite upside. The downside is that Forest Hill Road pretty much sucks for riding. It's slow going on the way to Forest Hill from Auburn, because there's a net uphill of about 2000' over 17 miles, plus it's a fairly wide road so all the cars go fast and it's very wind-prone, and my primary personal problem with this road is the shoulder, which is mostly narrow, strewn with glass and other debris, and there is this ledge created by two different sets of pavement, and I actually wasn't going to reveal this in the blog but today I experienced my first "crash" of 2008 thanks to this stupid ledged shoulder, a car coming next to me, a big stick log, afternoon sun in my eyes, and "Hangin' Tough" or some similar nonsense in my ears. Basically I just did an ungraceful slow somersault and now I have red mud all over my kit and bars.

But the road after Forest Hill Road made it all worth it! Decent pavement, hardly any cars, and so many views! The clouds were incredible.

Also here is Greg at the Vin Diesel Bridge over the American River, so called by me because Vin threw a car over it in XXX because it's the highest bridge in the U.S.

Next time, I will skip the Forest Hill Road portion of this ride.

Sorry for the complaining. I feel stupid bitching about stuff, I mean how lucky am I to have gotten to ride outside on a beautiful day with so many non-snow-covered sights! It should have been a lovely ride. But I couldn't stop thinking about how I used to always share beautiful rides with friends. Now I realize how lucky I was to have started my cycling career in the Bay Area, not only did I have loads of great rides on hand, but I also had loads of great people to ride with. Now it's just me and my ipod, both of which I am bored of (hence today's music selection). In Oakland, even if I did my training alone, I still saw countless cyclists or other friends when I was out riding. Today I saw 3 cyclists, and that's counting the 30 seconds I spent riding with Greg "I Don't Ride Slow" Remaly. Hmf. I feel lonely.

Everything has a tradeoff - apparently the tradeoff for living on a beautiful lake with minimal traffic in a safe and tight-knit community is that I can't ride to the local coffee shop, meet up with a handful of teammates and friends, and spend the day together on bikes. I am still adjusting to this, I guess I just took for granted how important the social aspect of riding was to me. Overall, the tradeoff is worth it. I am happy about our move to Tahoe, even though it doesn't always seem like it on my blog!

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Thursday, January 24, 2008

I Want One

And p.s. "shetland pony" is my favourite google image search ever

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008


So I changed the look here a little bit... I was kind of starting to bore mySELF with my blog layout, which is not quite a good sign.

I did not step outside once today, but since it was around 20 degrees out I don't feel too badly! I had the day off from swimming, so I slept in a bit, had French Toast (new fave breakfast), worked from home, baked cookies for Greg, made the kitty snuggle with me, and did a two-hour trainer ride. Woohoo! I watched disc 1 of the 2005 Tour and listened to music. There's this one part I like where they ask a bunch of riders who they think will win, everyone except Vino says it will be Lance. Vino says Jan. At this point Vino is 3rd in GC and Jan is like 10th. I also find McEwen's high-horsey explanation of why it was not his fault he butted his head on Stuart O'Grady's shoulder during the final sprint, it was totally Stuey's, blah blah blah snort blah.

One thing I did not do was read any more of "Three Cups of Tea". Tomorrow is book club, I am beginning to wonder why I RSVP'ed yes because I can guarantee that everyone else will have read more than I have (2 pages). For the first time in my life I am going searching for Cliff's Notes, provided I have time tomorrow during my busy workout, work, stretch, veg, and draw schedule.

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Indoor Training Tips

1. Bombard yourself with entertainment - music in earphones, TV on closed caption, gossip mag on nearby table, boyfriend to talk to you, and cell phone to talk to other people.

2. Get in arguments with fellow gym goers about the "30 minute limit on cardio equipment when people are waiting!" rule.

3. Stage contests with other athletes, for example who can stand on one foot for the longest. Appropriate prize for the winner is a good ice pack, if they are anything like me they'll strain something in their determination to win.

4. When all else fails, make your kitty work out with you.

See, look at that face! He loves it! (Yes Tracie I am a CAT LADY!!)

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Monday, January 21, 2008

A Couple of Uplifting Conversations

Last week was a rough week for some reason. Boo-hoo all the time about everything. I was worse than Ricky from the current Project Runway who cries every episode. When crying, I rotate between three numbers on my cell phone: my mom, my best girl friend, and my best guy friend.

Frequency of check-up calls from them is directly proportional to frequency of my blubbering voicemails.

One of the three is really good at check up calls:

My phone rings...
Me: Hello?
Him: Hey guys, wussup? Definitely...
Me: Um, hello?
Him: Oh, hey sorry! I just got to training camp.
Me: O.K.
Him: Dude that's so sick!
Me: Um, do you need to go or something?
Him: Yeah kinda.

The next day, my phone rings again...
Me: Hello?
Him: [commotion in background] Hey! How are you doing?
Me: O.K. What's all that commotion?
Him: We are getting ready to watch Hell on Wheels!
Me: That's cool. I watched that the other day, I love that movie, *sigh* Jan looks so GOOD in celeste *sigh*, but that Beloki crash never gets easy to watch does it?
Him: .... huh? What? Say that again?
Me: Nevermind it was nothing.
Him: Hey this is kind of interfering with the movie, talking on the phone I mean.
Me: You called me!

Good thing he's my best boy-space-friend or else I might be really annoyed and then start to cry.

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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Third and Inches

I am grateful that my new snow boots came in the mail on Friday. (A) I think they are totally cute and cozy and (B) over the next ten days, the only day without a snow icon in the forecast is this coming Saturday.

Thus I am also grateful that, despite my previous pansy statements, I rode outside yesterday! It might be a little while before I can do that again.

Third grateful item is yesterday's Walmart/Target trip. A trip to Carson was not in the weekend plan considering we went twice last week, but yesterday morning our TV up and died. Which was fine with me - Greg got it 3 weeks ago on Craigslist for $65 (about $50 too much if you ask me), it was big and heavy and the remote didn't work and it was some brand I'd never heard of and it looked old and sure enough, it turned out to be a piece of crap after all. Since today is NFL Conference Championship day (hence the post title), no TV was no option. Originally we were trying to stay frugal and get another old-fashioned TV but due to size constraints we got a 20" flat screen instead. It's way easier to move around for use during trainer workouts, it doesn't dominate the whole room, and side bonus: the remote works AND came with batteries!

I think this TV will be a key over the next 10+ days, I am feeling the need to get my weekly hour totals on the bike out of the single digits, which will entail 4 two-hour trainer rides (?!). Training camp is the second/third week of February and I'd rather not, I dunno, suck? And PS why didn't I ask for cross-country ski equipment for Christmas? I couldn't have truly expected to ride outside all winter, nor could I have expected to magically grow some insane tolerance for the trainer. Anyhow, cross your fingers for me that I pull an Eli Manning and suddenly get my shit together.

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Friday, January 18, 2008

Still Not a Snow Bunny

After two good weeks of indoor trainer workouts on my bike, I decided yesterday I'd had enough. I braved the 34-degree clear but windy 3:30 in the afternoon Tahoe roads, seemingly well-dressed...

I was so cold after 1 hour that I headed straight to the gym for my run. It took me a good half hour on the treadmill to even begin to feel my toes.

Several options and possibilities exist:
- I have bad circulation and shouldn't even bother with Out Side
- I have OK circulation but shouldn't have counted on late afternoon sun for warmth
- Wool socks, monster-size booties,thick leg warmers, bib shorts, craft turtle neck, jersey, wind vest, wind jacket, K2 survival gear gloves, and hat with ear flaps are insufficient
- I am a pansy

It will be a couple weeks before I test this out again.

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Thursday Update

Hooray for gloomy Wednesday being behind me, not to be dealt with again for 6 more days!

Today is going great.

-I swam, during which time I realized that my goal of swimming 3000 yards in one hour is close to being achieved, especially if I stop gossiping during workouts!

-I ate my favourite snack, which I credit myself for inventing but I am sure someone else has come up with this before:
1 grapefruit, peeled and halved and split into segments
walnut pieces (proportion to taste)
raisins (proportion to taste)
1 teaspoon honey
-OR- if you are feeling virtuous and/or carcinogenically immune, substitute splenda for honey

-I secretly did my part to NOT help the Republicans, in order to make up for the fact that I am registered to vote in California, not Nevada, and thus cannot take part in this week's caucus

-I devised some plans to bring my art into the year 2008... be on the lookout!

-I put off reading next week's book club book for yet another day. It's called "Three Cups of Tea", about this guy who starts schools in Pakistan. It is boring me so far, although I am only on page 2. Why am I not drawn to the do-gooder story?! (pls don't answer that) I want to read about tweakers and sex fiends and unwed moms and people whose shit is not together! Bitchy, I know. Maybe I should start a Dissatisfied Cynics Book Club - interested parties can comment anonymously and we'll get this rolling.

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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Growing Up?

Yesterday I filled out this initial-contact-form online for my university's career services office. All I have been doing for the past 7 years is just following what life hands me. Not too much of a plan. So I figured that if I take a bunch of Myers-Briggs-type things, it will become imminently obvious that I should be a yak vet in Mongolia and I can get going on the pursuit of my life's calling.

I've already encountered one obstacle: the return email I got suggested career service in the form of a $30 phone consultation. Not as glamorous nor as fun as "what kind of person are you" multiple choice.

Second obstacle could be any one of a number of things: I feel old, I have this "athlete" thing hanging around my neck in potentially albatrossic form, my cash supply is significantly smaller than the lake I live on (in relative terms, think 5-gallon fish tank), and I have a general overwhelming feeling of inertia. Also my neck hurts.

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Monday, January 14, 2008

Grand Tour of Tahoe/Carson

Greg and I headed down to Carson aGAIN today - yesterday we rode, today we did errands, because yesterday, when we had planned to kill the two proverbial birds, someone anonymous forgot his shorts so we had to go back home to get them rather than do errands with that time. But no matter, we thought, this is a rest week so we have oodles of time.

As we drove down the mountain today, though, we saw a ton of emergency lights. The intersection of highways 50 and 395 was completely shut down due to 6 cars in varying states of squishedness and overturnedness, and one huge tractor-trailer on its side and all across the road. Gnarly stuff... and traffic was ridiculous. The accident was in between Carson and all its big box stores, really poor placement choice by those drivers.

So after errands we took the "scenic" route home, via Kingsbury Grade and South Lake Tahoe. Fortunately I at least had my camera phone, if not my real camera, because we got some great views of the Carson Valley. Actually here it doesn't look like much more than a big cold white blanket but I thought it was beautiful.

I am sort of kind of looking forward to riding this climb on my bike come spring/summer I guess? It's fierce. And not in the ANTM/Tim Gunn/Larry David way.

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Surefire way to Look like a Monkey

Apply some Tom's of Maine Long-Lasting Deodorant to your armpits.

Wait approx. 5 minutes.

Start scratching each armpit MADLY with the hand of the same arm, jump up and down, keep scratching, because your pits feel like they are on FIRE....

Trust me, it works, I know from CURRENT EXPERIENCE.
I thought this natural stuff was supposed to be BETTER for you, but I am going insane with discomfort!!!!!! And I just checked in with my little sis, the one in NH who voted and who has a messy room and who I call Scare, anyway the SAME THING happened to HER!!!!

I feel like a character in The Jungle Book, and not one of the cute panther or wolf ones.

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Sunday, January 13, 2008


I was well on my way to riding indoors for the first 2 months of 2008. BO-RING. But today I got inspired by former Metrominter and current Kenda Tire-er, Amy McGuire, and went down to Carson City to ride with her. My first outdoor ride of the year! I had forgotten how great it feels to actually move when I pedal.

It was a lovely ride, and really fun to have an interesting and entertaining riding partner. When Greg and I ride together, I am usually staring at his butt (from various distances), and come to think of it I haven't ridden with anyone else since early October! It was also fun to have someone to listen to my stories...

Amy got quite an earful about Charlie and his bed and how I talk to him and how he stares at me like I am silly:

She also heard all about the fishies and how Stupidhead is a total punk who always chases poor Sweetie and Pipsqueak and thusly I am going to fill their tank with plants so the fatso gets stuck and the sweet angelic little two can eat and play in peace.

See? Look at those evil waddling eyes!

Look at little Pipsqueak! And at Pipsqueak and Sweetie running for their lives!

But don't worry, the fishies and kitty and Amy and Greg all love me and think I am totally cool and great. As do you, I am sure!

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Friday, January 11, 2008

Everything counts in large amounts

I'm getting a little weird up here in the mountains. (ps no peanut gallery comments about "getting", please)

- I count stuff all the time. Every swim stroke (~14 per length usually, the way I count it), every pedalstroke (~70/min during big gear, ~95 otherwise), footsteps (90 per minute), breaths (counted in 20's), reps (12 is my favourite)... my workouts are a series of numbers and I find it comforting and nerdily inspiring.

- After literally 15 years of eating salad at least once a day, I quit. I can't deal.

- I have only purchased one item of clothing for myself in the entire last 3 months. These really cute snow boots which I totally need.

- Suddenly the idea of getting a boob job seems cool rather than disgusting. Thoughts? I am envisioning a nice C?

I blame it on a. the snow that's making me walk like a toddler and b. the proliferation of people in this town who WILLINGLY change the gym TV channel to FOX FREAKING NEWS of all things. Fox News! For pete's sake! It's all their fault. Like my grandmother used to say, it doesn't matter what happened as long as you can place the blame.

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Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Truth, inspired by VH1's Best Songs of the 90's

Salt n Pepa's "Whatta Man" comes on at #21ish.

"I miss that look," Greg says to me and the TV, "the one with the short shorts and the top button undone."

The vid:


OK "Sandman" is #18. Greg was just like, in seriousness, too, "is this Metallica?"


But, this is coming from the guy who loves the movie "Blue Crush" (the surfy one with Kate Bosworth before she got stickly) because it has a great soundtrack."

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Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Snowed in again

We got another 8-ish inches of snow today, but actually that is a total shot in the dark estimate - I haven't been outside at all!

I worked from home. I sent Greg out for butter, brown sugar, and the mail. I baked cookies. I thought better of running outside in the falling snow on top of the still frozen slush ice in 20 degree temps. I rode my trainer for 2 hours. I watched The Hard Road and tried to mute as much of the cheesy-crappy soundtrack as possible. I watched Pumping Iron too, which I liked - side note: Arnold's boobs are way bigger than mine! The 1975 bodybuilder outfits and hairdo's are awesome. Now I am watching Obama's speech after the results of the NH primary came out. My sister lives in New Hampshire, but she wouldn't tell me how she voted today... Hopefully she didn't fall for Hillary's "tearful and emotional" incident about whatever it was.

Oh god. Maybe my sister is actually a Republican?! I realize I didn't even ask her that question.

Man. Tomorrow I am going outside, I don't care if I slip and fall on my butt 12 times. Good for the blog and good for the soul...

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Monday, January 07, 2008

Breakdowns - what to do?!

I am not talking about my car breaking down, btw I am still not driving that thing until the snow goes away.

No, I am talking about mental breakdowns before/during/after/because of workouts. Cycling and running are going along swimmingly for me, but swimming is not. For some reason I have cried in the pool during every single workout over the past 2 weeks (the mere duration of this rules out PMS as a possible cause!). It's stupid because I know I am improving, my times are getting better and my stroke is feeling smoother and I generally know I have left my little November-December plateau behind.

So why do I keep freaking out?

Freakout Scenario #1: I gaze across the other lanes as I put on my cap and goggles, see people doing 50's twice as fast as I do, and I just stand there motionless then go back in the locker room and call one of 3 people and cry about how I suck and there are currently like 5 chicks in the pool who do not.

Freakout Scenario #2: I decide it's high time I learn flip turns/backstroke/butterfly kick/anything other than freestyle and my version of "breastroke". So I grab Greg, make him give me a demonstration, spend 2 minutes trying to imitate him, then just stand there motionless in the water trying to hold back tears of frustration at not being perfect, stubbing my toes on the wall, inhaling water, etc.

Freakout Scenario #3: I see a spider on the deck and start screaming and run into the locker room.

Freakouts have happened TOO MUCH recently. I think this is a sign that I need to change things up - go back to swimming in the afternoon, when there are usually only one or two other swimmers and they are pretty chill. And if I go after work, when I am not pressed for time, I will be more inclined to set aside time for skills practices rather than just cramming as much yardage in before work as possible. I'll go to the pool with a set plan of what I am going to do, rather than just going by what Greg is doing. And I'll stop and remember that I am a million times huger than a spider before I set the lifeguards into rescue-the-screamer mode.

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Saturday, January 05, 2008

Blizzard: 100% Chance

Day two of the storm, we currently have 2.5-3 feet. The snow isn't supposed to stop until Wednesday! Yesterday it started out as a rain-snow mix, since the temperature was a bit above freezing. Greg and I did our swim workout in the morning, and then he was going to drop me off at work but since work is at 7500', not the 6500' of the lake, slush turned to full-on white-out blizzard a little above 7000' so we turned around. Gingerly. I worked from home until mid-afternoon, and then headed to the gym to run and lift. We had about 5 accumulated inches of slush by that time, not exactly run-able but definitely drive-able.

By the time I left the gym at 5, though, we had blizzard conditions at lake level. Lots of small snow flakes and lots of wind so it was incredibly difficult to see anything, plus the slush from earlier had frozen to ice underneath the freshly falling snow. Major ew... And as we all know, I am NOT the world's best driver in ideal conditions. But it is only a mile and a half from the gym to my house, other people seemed to be driving just fine, so I figured I would just slowly make my way home. Plus I had left both cell phones at home so I couldn't exactly call for rescue! After thirty-five harrowing minutes, 10 of which spent immobile and stuck at an intersection, I made it!

For the rest of this particular blizzard, I will be running to the gym and to anywhere else I need to go. I did that today and it actually worked out much better than yesterday's trip! Although I have to run slowish, as soon as I tried to run my normal pace I fell flat on my face. But it was so peaceful and different outside, as soon as I warmed up it was great fun. My eyelashes were coated with snow!

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Friday, January 04, 2008

Making Fun of Ma Again

I know, I know, you're probably thinking my poor long-suffering mom has had enough... but actually looking back over the past few months, I have gone pretty easy on her, so I don't feel bad about making blatant huge fun about her silly notes she posts all over the place. (Plus I gave her great Christmas presents.) The notes are probably there because my mom always has houseguests, kids, tenants, and random friends in and out of the house all the time. Her sister says "Sal collects people", which is pretty true.

Anyhow, apparently everyone who does laundry at her house is a bit retarded:

Including my mom a little bit. It's totally not summertime. Also in this last one, we see my mom's continued use of the letter 'x' in ways that disturb her children.

Then she also has this coffee pot that is finicky.
Although, SHE was the one who made the coffee on Christmas morning, and despite her own note she didn't turn the handle and coffee and grounds got all over the kitchen! She got a late-Christmas present the next day: a new coffee pot (curious to see if that one gets a note on it in Sharpie, "PLEASE only make DECAF as it's BETTER for you" or something)

Also the toilet upstairs has its own little note:
It seems that the "smiley face" is taking over from the "ThanX" as my mom's this-is-just-a-sweet-little-lighthearted-reminder!-indicator.

Finally, I think that this note-ness is genetic. My sister has started leaving them, too:

I guess Greg's lucky we don't have pads of paper and scotch tape laying around!

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Thursday, January 03, 2008

Here Comes the Storm!

Yay snow! I think I am starting to like it here.

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Wednesday, January 02, 2008

I was busy getting lost.

Today was one of those days. One of those days that was cool but somehow reminded me that I am a total scatter brain.

Anyway I don't want to be totally boring but basically I scheduled my whole day around driving all the way to Reno (a good 45 mins away) to get my SRM cranks switched back onto my road bike, to get a new fish that might eat the algae please, to go to Trader Joe's to stock up for the 5-10ft snow we are supposedly getting this weekend, and to go return some borrowed items to our friend Nenad and lend him our copy of the Bourne Ultimatum as a thank-you.

1. I forgot the SRM head, which admittedly is not necessary for crank switching, but then I realized that I had no idea where the SRM head was, I hadn't seen it since November 12, thus it was probably completely out of batteries and probably forgot all my nice race data from Silverman, and speaking of out of batteries what did I do with the charger?!? Man, next time I think it's a good idea to buy myself a $3,600 toy I am going to seriously think again.

2. Reno is predicted to get 4-6 INCHES, not feet but INCHES, of snow this weekend (who am I, a recent transplant who was quivering in her flipflops at the mere thought of snow two months ago, who am I to scoff?), anyway the Reno TJ's was hit by a hurricane of freaking-out bariatric Renoites today and there was like nothing left when I got there.

3. I left the Bourne DVD in my laptop. In Incline. I did not realize this until after I got there, to Nenad's house, in Reno, not Incline, and of course Nenad was like "I can't wait to watch this tonight!... Oh. Nevermind." I am such a jackass of a friend.

Oh and btw I got lost twice (both times while on the phone, once while talking to Sharon and she didn't have any qualms about reminding me of our return trip from Redlands, and the second time talking to my brother on my personal phone and also trying to figure out how to check the voicemail on my new work cell phone). Side note: the good news about now having two cingular cell phones is that when I lose one I can call it with the other one and it's free minutes!!

Additionally after 30 minutes of Courtenayite freaking-out I found both SRM necessities!

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year!

Well, after a CRAZY and PARTYLICIOUS New Year's Eve, I am finally finally feeling coherent enough to blog.


Our NYE was totally boring yet totally perfect. Healthy dinner, some netflix, and then we passed out at 9:30 p.m. I am still feeling sleep-deprived after lots of late nights and early mornings on the east coast (basically midnight-8 a.m., nothing drastic but Cour10ay totally needs her 9+ hours in order to be remotely nice/charming), so this was the best possible evening for me!

On to other peoples' more interesting lives...

I recently learned that, in the Reno hospital system, health-care workers are not allowed to call overweight people obese, overweight, fat, etc. The term is now officially "bariatric" (like geriatric but with a b). And, the hospitals have special 4XL-sized toilets (the size of a small hot tub), wheelchairs, beds, doorways, the list goes on. I guess this is important in Reno, where 55% of the population is "bariatric". If you don't believe me, just hang out for 10 minutes in the Trader Joe's/Big Lots parking lot.

I also recently learned one reason why the McMansion Explosion is so huge in Anne Arundel County, Maryland (and probably more than a few other counties). Thirty years ago, there were hardly any developments in the whole county. Basically everything that wasn't a town was farmland. Then farmers began to sell to developers... My mom's friend Ricky Davis had a farm where he raised cattle and crops, and hosted Future Farmers of America events. The farm was in his family for over 200 years. Recently, Ricky's neighbor farmer died and none of his family wanted to keep up the farm, so it was sold to a developer who put up 15 or so monstrosities with crappy landscaping (read: no trees, so everyone from the road could see how ginormous the houses were). The people who moved in started going over to Ricky's, complaining that the cows smelled, the farm machinery was unsightly, the FFA events were disturbing them, etc., and he needed to stop doing all that. Ricky fought back for a while but eventually he saw that things were only getting worse, so he too sold out to a developer and moved to Iowa (to farm in peace, I assume.)

It all makes me cry. It feels so unsustainable to me - continually bulldozing over land to make it into strip malls or housing developments where everyone gets a 4 car garage with a couple of acres of land. In Reno, which p.s. is in a DESERT, this land is usually landscaped with all kinds of east-coast plants that require lots of water, which by the way doesn't really grow on trees in the desert, so to speak. In Maryland, it's just making everything ugly, and contributing to the death of the Chesapeake Bay, which is another rant of mine that I will save for another blog.

At the moment I am quite happy to be in Incline, where homeowners have to jump through twelve hoops to do anything to their houses lest they adversely affect the environment (or their neighbors' lake view).

Whoa.... where did the "happy" of my post-title go?!

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