Monday, December 28, 2009

500 miles and counting

I always log my workouts to see what I did that week and I've been quite steadfast aka, obsessed, with logging my running this year - tracking mileage, pace, etc. Today I did a 6 mile run that put me over 500 miles of running for the year. So in honor of that, I thought I'd share a little on my run today.

I'm in Princeton for the holidays and typically I run on the DNR canal when I'm here. But with the crazy weather the east coast has gotten in the last week, I'm pretty sure that trail is under about a foot of water right now. So rather than ruin my lovely (stinky) shoes by pretending I'm some weird ultra trail runner, I decided to take a run through downtown Princeton. I can deal with running in the rain, but running in watery, muddy trails when I know my shoes and socks are going to get all dirty is just not cool. Not cool mother nature! No one messes with my running shoes.

So I started off my run by deciding that I would run out and past Einstein's house. So I'm running, I'm running, I'm running... I'm confused... where the heck is it? With a sort of poetic-ness that I seem to manage (a lot), I was searching for genius on the wrong street. Crap! I cut through the park, ran up to Mercer and ahhh... there it is. 112 Mercer Street.

Except it didn't really go down like that. It went "ahhhh, there it is. 152 Mercer street!" It wasn't until I got home and employed the power of google that I realized I was gawking at the wrong house.

Sigh. Well, at least now I know why I wasn't suddenly able to do long division when standing in front of 152 Mercer. No magic there - I bet Einstein, the local shoemaker, not local genius, lived in 152. How awful would that be? To share a name with a genius like Einstein and everyone gets all excited to meet you and ask what you're working on and you have to reply "well, a chap just brought in a rather wrecked pair of brown loafers that I'm trying to stitch back together..."

Hopefully there wasn't another Einstein living in Princeton during his time.

I continued my run up towards the university and passed the Center for Theological Inquiry. I wonder how often drunk college students wander in their front doors and yell out "Is there a god?!?!?!"

I also ran past the Laboratory for Integrative Genomics. I have no idea what they do there but I hope it's something to do with gnomes who are poor spellers.

(apparently not - another google search tells me that "Integrated Genomics provides a full range of products and services to support research in microbial genomics, biochemistry and gene expression. These products and services are based on ERGO™, our web-based genome analysis platform.")

Well, la di da!

I ran a total of 6 miles in about 53 minutes which works out to just under a 9 minute mile. I remember when I first starting really running last year, a 9 minute mile seemed herculean to me. Now it's my slow, comfortable, easy pace. It's amazing how much you can improve when you just work on it! Who knew??

Next year I hope to log 1000 miles!

Of course, first up on my list of things to do is to figure out which one really is Einstein's house.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Oda fun

Nobunari Oda. The name means FUN! or FUNSIES!! in japanese. Maybe. My japanese isn't all that great, but if I go by instinct, then my translation is correct.

Anyone who can skate to a video game soundtrack is pretty awesome in my book. Here he is at the 2005 World Junior Championsip, which he won, skating his short program. Check out the move at 2:07 where he is playing around with choreography and then effortlessly launches into a double axel. WAY harder than it looks.

SHORT PROGRAM

This year he's skating to an equally entertaining Charlie Chaplin inspired long program that I'm guessing is going to tear the roof off the joint in Vancouver.

VIDEO

But along with him being a great performer, he's also a frisky little sucker. In 2007, he was arrested for drunk driving and had to sit out the season. (not that I condone drunk driving, but you just know this guy knows how to party. Ok, but also - look at how small he is! He probably just sniffed some vodka and got hammered)

In 08, he decided that he wanted to train with Nikolai Morozov, who is one of the IT coaches for skaters right now. Only problem - his main rival, Daisuke Takahashi, was already training with Morozov. No problem. Oda showed up anyway. Takahasi took off-ahashi. He probably showed up to practice one morning, saw Oda and said OhNoda. (oh man, japanese names are way too much fun). Takahashi hit the road, leaving Oda to train with Morozov. Good thing too because Oda has flourished under Morozov.

Can't wait to see these two duke it out in Vancouver! I don't know if there's many hard feelings - apparently they're friends. But in my imaginary head land, I like to pretend they're bitter rivals with an Ice Castles type score that plays in the background of all their conversations.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

some thoughts from Skate Canda

The Grand Prix of Figure Skating is winding up this weekend with Skate Canada. And what a semi-almost-fantastic event it was! Ok, that's not fair - I only watched the ladies and men's events. I'm sure the pairs was fantastic.

The pairs winner

Oh right - the winners of the pairs event, Savchenko and Szolkowy from Germany, skated in clown costumes complete with painted faces.

Sigh.... I'm not sure I can handle some of the costumes we're seeing this season. There's another couple from China (ice dancers this time) who are skating to music from Cats and seriously have TAILS on their costumes. Along with painted faces.

I only approve of tails if they are somehow used in lifts. .... Or spins. (I get dizzy with excitement just thinking about the possibilities)

Actually - the men's short programs got me all skate-happy so that's what I'm sharing and edu-mah-cating on today

First up, Daisuke Takahashi. He is from Japan and has, without a doubt, the funnest name in men's figure skating. Maybe the universe.

Daisuke's short program at Skate Canada

Say it with me... Die-sue-key Tah-kah-Haash-she. Sometimes I just say his name out loud for fun. Sometimes I tell the people at Starbucks that my name is Daisuke Takahashi just to see them struggle with trying to spell that out onto my latte cup.

And oh yea, he's a pretty awesome skater too. Not sure what's up with the super offensive, scratchy music (my ears don't want) but with jumps and footwork like that, he could skate to Barney's theme song and I'd probably still root for him. Oh forget it - he could totally suck and I'd still root for him because I just like his name so much!

Jeremy Abbott could be the surprise of the season. Last year, he burst onto the scene and won the Grand Prix Final - which, huge. And then he stormed nationals and won that title too. So the expectations were pretty high for him entering Worlds. (The competition order for the season is the Grand Prix events, the Grand Prix Final, Nationals, and then Worlds) He didn't necessarily bomb at worlds, but he had a really rough time considering how amazing he'd been all year. He probably just peaked a bit too early in his season.

He changed coaches over the summer (his old coach has about 67,322 elite level skaters and he felt like he wasn't getting enough attention - don't blame him) He won Skate Canada this weekend and seems to be getting it together after a rough first Grand Prix event. Soooo.... he seems to have some momentum. Just making the US men's Olympic team is going to be tough, but I would put a lot of money on him being in Vancouver - and having the skate of his life.

Jeremy's short program from Skate Canada

This might be one of my favorite short programs ever. And mom, you're going to LOVE this program ;)

Let's be clear - French men skaters are hilarious. Hiiii-larious. With the exception of Brian Joubert - he's a constantly malfunctioning robot. Very, very attractive, but a mechanical, one-trick pony, robot who, when he can't land his quad, is pretty much the worlds most boring skater.

But onto the hilarious and wonderfully entertaining French men - Alban Preaubert (yes, he's riding a horse) There's just something about this guy that I like so very, very much. He's not going to vying for the Olympic or World title anytime soon, but he's going to have a ton of fun trying to get there.

The Frenchies are performers. They understand that there's people in the stands watching them and they actually (gasp!) skate for them. It's such a contrast between insomnia-inducing Joubert, (who is a huge star in France for some strange reason - "France, making no sense since ... EVER"), and these other guys who just smoke him in every way. I can't wait for Joubert to retire so these other guys can get the much-deserved spotlight in France. Joubert - you're gorgeous, but it's time for you to become a businessman. Go sell ties. Or air conditioners.

Patrick Chan had a really terrible time at Skate Canada which makes my heart cry a bit. This guy is the most elegant skater out there right now. I could watch him skate forever. Chan is the skater that will cause me sleepless nights in Vancouver because I just want so badly for him to do well. I'm chalking up his Skate Canada performance as a total fluke - just shaking the nerves out before the big show.

Daisuke Takahashi!!! (just because)

Bringing home the cows - Italian style

This is Samuel Contesti from Italy. I'm not sure if he's a farmer, or an auto mechanic with a penchant for plaid.

Short Program at Skate Canada

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Random thoughts from Skate Amercia

Some random thoughts from Skate America....

This year, Skate America was held in Lake Placid, NY. I've been to several skating competitions up there and it's honestly one of the most stunning places I've ever seen. Unfortunately, "stunning" was a word that didn't get a chance to enter the 1980 Herb Brooks arena too often - only when Yu-Na Kim was skating.

The event took place in the same arena that the 1980 Dream Team hockey game took place - 'DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES?!??!?"

Why, yes. Yes I do. And her name is Yu-Na Kim. She hails from South Korea where she is basically Elvis on skates - but a chick. With squintier eyes.

The great thing about Yu-Na is that she is SO far ahead of the other ladies, it's basically a given that she'll win every event she enters and yet at the end of every program that she skates, she looks so genuinely happy and relieved to have put out a good performance. She seems to be keeping a level head in the midst of the Olympic crazyness and media hype. Very cool.

She basically has no competition - not a single person can touch her in terms of points. And yet she skates as if she's backed into a corner, coming out with fists raised and ready to take on the world. I don't know how she does it - but it's what competition in skating should really be about. You're competing against yourself - it's a cliche but you're out there simply to do your best. And the judges will do whatever the hell they want to do. But if you put out your best performance, you can't ever feel bad about it. And that's seems to be how she's approaching her skating this season. Again, very cool.

She had an uncharacteristically rough skate during the long program but I'm thinking it's almost better - she was probably due for a malfunction and better here than later.

I'm just crossing every available body part that she stays healthy throughout the season. If she doesn't win in Vancouver, it will only be because she got hurt and wasn't able to jump for two months. It will be an absolute travesty if she doesn't win. She is incredible and a very special gift to the world of skating.

Fumie Sugari, Japan, loves to skate wearing gloves. It drives me nuts. Seriously - you can't deal with cold hands for 4 minutes? You learn to deal with that when you're a juvenile level skater. She's been on the olympic level scene since the invention of milk. And yet she still looks 12. She's a little boring but every once in awhile she'll make you cry so for that, I like her. Who doesn't like to cry? She likely won't make the Japanese Olympic team but who knows - fellow Japan-ite, former sensation, Mao Asada is having a ROUGH season and if she doesn't pull it together soon, Fumie may find herself on the Oly team.

Elena Glebova from Estonia had a fairly strong performance. She's the four-time national champion in Estonia. That sounds pretty impressive, but of course, it's Estonia. National championships don't take place in an ice rink, they take place in a parking lot. And everyone just pushes giant rocks around. But hey, I give her a lot of credit. Not many people can pull off a dress that incorporates tassels, tie-dye, brocaded sequins and a high collar.

I'm a big fan of Rachel Flatt. She's not always the flashiest performer, but she's consistent - and she's honest. By that I mean, when she skates, there's not a lot of applied drama or pretense. She's just Rachel. It's refreshing. She's the closest thing to a lock for the US olympic team - but who knows. Nationals will be interesting for the ladies. The top 6(ish) are pretty even.

Rachel is the most even competitor out of all of them which is why most think she'll make the team... and she's probably the skater capable of placing the highest in Vancouver.... which is a little depressing - the US ladies skating scene is a little bleak right now. They really are desperate for a STAR and no one's stepping up to the plate.... Mirai Nagasu is the one who could really shake things up, just not sure she has it in her right now.

Ryan Bradley is about as adorable as they come - and a fantastic performer. Few in men's skating can touch him in terms of crowd appeal. He has a lot of scoring potential - when he hits, which .... I doubt he'll find himself on the Olympic team (he doesn't always skate well under pressure and nationals, the olympic qualifier, will be a pressure cooker), but if he does make it, the world will be in for a treat with his long program.

Evan has feathers on his costume. And mesh netting. A lot of it. Neither sit well with me. In fact, that fruitcake I ate last christmas digested easier than Evan's feathers. Not cool, Evan. Not cool.

And those are my thoughts.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

What's in a name?

Wisconsin isn't all cheese and beer. There's also a lot of "very serious work" that goes on here as well. Many national and even global companies call Wisco home.

I couldn't help but notice that three of those companies - Kohl's, Colders and Kohler - all start the same way that "cold" starts. Which makes sense seeing as how Wisconsin is a rather cold place to live.

Three other companies that call Wisconsin home also start similarly. Johnson Controls, Johnson Wax and Johnson & Johnson. Which also makes sense because what do people do when it's cold? Play with their.... well, you get the idea.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Carolina Kostner - Italian and messy as spaghetti

Sports are always more fun to watch when you're good and smart about em. And I'm pretty much 100 percent, without a doubt, totally certain that EVERYone who's ANYone will be glued to their tv's come February, positively captivated by a phenomenal, glittery, chiffony (slightly gay) spectacle. So I have decided to edu-mah-cate my friends and family on the oh-so-fabulous sport that is figure skating. That way ya'll be real good n smart n stuff when you're watching the BEST SPORT EVER come February.

First up in the lesson plan - Carolina Kostner, Italy

I saw Carolina for the first time at the 2003 World Championships in Washington D.C. It was my first worlds and I was a runner for ABC Sports. (it was an incredible experience) I was watching one of the early practices and there was this skinny little gazelle just flying up and down the ice. Her speed was incredible and her jumps (when she landed them) were HUGE. I remember thinking 'who in the world IS this girl?' At that time, I was pretty tapped into the world of figure skating and thought I knew all the top contenders.

In ladies figure skating (and men's and pairs) you do two programs, a short and a long. Where you place in the short determines when you skate in the long with the bottom ranked skaters going first and the top six going last. That way it's easier for the judges to rank you accordingly - saving their big scores for what should be the best skaters at the end of the competition. (In the short program, it's just a random draw for skate order.) Carolina did great in the short program, finishing in the top 6 - which meant that she would skate in the final flight of ladies.

Carolina's Short Program

Worlds was live that year and ABC was only planning on showing the top six ladies. Well, Sarah Hughes was also competing but had completely bombed her short program and ended up skating earlier in the night. This was the year following her surprising win in Salt Lake and she was sort of uncomfortably playing the role of 'media darling'. ABC was stuck with a tough choice - show this unknown Carolina (who was first up) OR go back and show Sarah Hughes program (who had rallied and put together an excellent showing in her long)

The choice was made to show Hughes during the warm-up and then still show Carolina's program so that the final six ladies were all seen. Because as Curt Gowdy Jr, the executive producer of the event, put in during the production meeting that day "what if this is the grand coming out party for this unknown skater from Italy and we miss it?" After watching her in practice all week, I was quietly nodding my head along in agreement - I really thought this was going to be a HUGE preview of great things for this girl.

Well - unfortunately, her long WAS exact preview of what we could expect from Carolina. Some beautiful moments, filled with a bunch of missed jumps. And cracking under pressure. And missed opportunity.

But Carolina will always be a sentimental favorite of mine because I will always feel like I "found" her. That's totally not anywhere near the truth, but in my fancy little imagination, I will always remember that I was impressed with her before anyone started chattering about her incredible potential at worlds in '03. She'll always be like that cool band you find at a dive bar in college and they go on to be Dave Matthews or something. (except Dave Matthews manages to make hits whereas Carolina.... well, she manages to hit the ice often enough I guess)

So the best part about being a fan of Carolina Kostner and why it'll always be exciting to watch her compete ..... Carolina is one fierce mess.

FIERCE

MESS

Her costumes are designed by Robert Cavalli and I'm sure a designer gown has never seen this much tragic action.

She also skates with perma-wedgie. Not sure why they've never addressed that little, err, issue ... you'd think it would be uncomfortable!

Carolina's skating is so incredible that people had a tendency to forget that she was a terrible competitor during most of her career (people have finally figured it out now) She managed to pull off an impressive third place at the 2005 World Championships.

So going into the 2006 Torino Olympics, she had a world of pressure on her shoulders to do well and repeat that effort. She was skating in her home country; she was even chosen as the flag bearer in the opening ceremony. The head of skating is Ottavio Cinquatto and it was generally believed that if she just stayed on her feet, she would for sure medal - that's how powerful his influence is on judging. (what, politics and scheming in figure skating?!?!? Never...... except for days that end in Y)

Her short program wasn't stellar, but also not terrible, but her long.... well, it had it's moments!!
Carolina's Olympic long program

You can just SEE the pressure on her face. You couldn't help but really feel for the girl (and you can hear the audience trying to carry her through this program.) I just adore this program though - I lovelovelove that open section where she hops on one foot across the ice. She's such a unique skater - if she could just harness her power... and nerves.... man, she'd be unstoppable.

Last year at Worlds, she had a so-so short program (again, love this program!) but just a disastrous long program. Possibly her worst ever. It'll be interesting to see how this performance and outcome effect her Olympic season. In 2006, she had all sorts of pressure on her because of her amazing world championships performance the year before.... in 2010, she'll have probably NO pressure because of her crappy worlds performance.

Maybe this will be a better situation for her mentally - going in with no expectations....

But whatever happens with Kostner, know that it'll be a wacky, crazy ride!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Canadian eh?

Here's the thing that's awesome about my life - I have pretty much the greatest family ever. Not just my mom - I mean, that's a given, have you met her? Yea - she's pretty much awesome defined. But the rest of my family rocks. Just saying.

So my big news and why I totally need to pick up with blogging again (btw blog - I totally owe you an apology for all the gross neglect I've inflicted on you)

...... I'm working the 2010 Vancouver Olympics producing figure skating for nbcolymics.com! Same stuff that I did in Beijing except this time for my most favoritest sport EVER. Skating!!

Seriously?

Yes blog - seriously.

I know - I'm still blown away too.

I wrote a short little note sharing my news that I sent on to my mom to forward on to the family and sure enough - tons of extremely sweet emails came flooding back congratulating me and saying how excited they were. Very genuine, very sweet, very typical of all of them, to be honest.

Awesome family.

It's so important.

I am so lucky to have this opportunity to go to Vancouver (my SECOND once in a lifetime opportunity) but really - it kind of pales when compared with the luck of having such a wonderful family.

So family of mine - I thank you.

I am so blessed and lucky to have you.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

8-08-09

I can't believe it's been exactly one year since the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics. Watching this video gives me chills.

Opening Video

I still can't believe I was in China. That I was working the Olympics. It's just unreal.
(and I still totally tear up thinking about Nastia winning the gold medal.)

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

observation #42a

Random thought for the day - I think that men tend to be more successful than women because men can be driven and dumb at the same time. It's hard to find a woman with that combination. And I don't mean dumb as in 'not smart' but dumb as in the ability to let stuff just roll off of you. Women think more than men. Life is difficult when you think.....

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Robin Pettersen - yay!

Check out this video featuring the amazing Robin Pettersen of UW-Whitewater. She was my mentor through college and played a huge role in giving me the confidence to get to where I am today. She really shaped my perspective on what it means to work hard and was a daily source of inspiration to me. Still is!
VIDEO

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Where My Pitches At????

Well, it was not a spectacular debut for 'Where My Pitches At' - in our opening game we lost 0-16. (and hey - if this was football, that'd be a respectable score!)

Sigh... at least we looked good.

I signed up for a co-ed softballl league a couple of months ago because it sounded like a fun way to spend Tuesday nights over the summer - hanging out with some people, enjoying a good natured American past-time, post game beers, matching t-shirts, etc etc etc. Good stuff! (ok, I signed up mostly for the t-shirt) Of course, before I signed up, I checked, double checked and triple checked that this league was NOT COMPETITIVE IN ANY WAY.

No, seriously.

NOT COMPETITIVE IN ANY WAY!!!!

I once had a fairly traumatizing experience with a touch football league in ny - a friend convinced me to sub for a game one saturday morning and I thought sure, why not - sounds like fun! Well, first of all the game was in Staten Island.... that should have been clue enough. It wasn't. I'm not very smart.

I get into the van (yea - a van picked me up, clue #2) and am immediately handed a playbook. Not just any old playbook - this thing is LAMINATED.

A laminated playbook.

Ohhhh yeeaaa, this game isn't going to be competitive at all!

I had to play because there have to be so many girls on the field and I proceeded to spend the whole game looking like a complete dork. The ten-hut would go, everyone would scatter to their assigned place, I would run to where I thought I was supposed to go and then just stand there and wave my arms to signal 'I'm open! I'm open!' while the person who was blocking me would stand right in front of me and just sort of look at me dumbfounded.

At the end of the game, someone from the other came up to me and said "good game." I was so totally relieved that it was over and thinking 'oh yea, maybe I didn't make a total fool out of myself!' ... I answered the person "oh, thank you!"

I completely missed the obvious fact that this person was simply stating the time honored tradition of chanting "good game, good game, good game, good game" to everyone on the other team.

D'oh!!!!

So, when the chance to play on this NOT COMPETITIVE co-ed softball league came up - I was understandably hesitant. I was convinced (promised) that it was just fun times.

Well - apparently the team we played tonight didn't get that memo as they packed mad skillz.

We got spanked.

BUT, we had an awesome cheering section - and by cheering, I mean drunk hecklers. We have pretty sweet baby blue t-shirts with our logo on it. (a dude swinging a bat that says "Where my Pitches At" on it - yes, sweet) So these drunkys in the bleachers (I think they were there for the other team but they might have just wandered in off the streets) I think they took pity on how terrible we were and they started cheering - good natured heckling - us. They had a lot of fun with the name (duh) and they also called us the "baby blues."

It's always fun to have fans - who cares if they're drunk and technically making fun of you.

Oh well, it's only uphill for the "Where my Pitches At" - I foresee a dramatic scrappy comeback story that will eventually be the inspiration for a Disney movie staring Bill Pullman.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

my first tri - TRY HARDER!

So this morning I did my very first triathlon. I signed up for it kind of on an impulse - I track all my workouts at this tri board and I absolutely love the people on this board. Just a seriously great group of people - and so I think I was kind of swayed by that sense of community. Also - if I'm being honest, I think my confidence got the better of me and I thought, ohhh, a sprint tri??? I can TOTALLY do that..... (.25 mile swim, 15 mile bike, 3.1 mile run)

Man - I AM DUMB

The following is basically taken from my race report on that board.....

Met up with buddy DJDavey at the Speedway in the mean streets of 'stally (west allis for those not fluent in djdavey speak).... traded bards, insults and general mockery and then we were off to Lake Mills.

So I got there, registered, walked around, got my bike set up, basically taking my sweet little time and then DOH!! Realized it was 28 minutes before my wave started and thought to myself - huh... I should probably put my wetsuit on and maybe get into the water to see what a lake feels like.
This was my first time swimming in open water, my first time wearing a wetsuit, my first time wearing a SWIM CAP.

Have I mentioned yet it was my first tri???

Oh
My
God.

I guess the best way to describe this is "wow" - I was very humbled by this whole experience. I did not expect it to feel this difficult at ALL. I signed up for this tri on an impulse 3 weeks ago and was traveling and crazy busy at work for the past two weeks. Apparently that combo makes it difficult to prepare for this sort of thing. I was thinking, oh, I just ran a half marathon a few weeks ago, I work out all the time - I'm fine.... no worries.... um, holy train FAIL!

Here's how my race went.

Took a dip before about 15 minutes before the race started, felt really good, very happy that the water didn't feel like an ice cube - generally felt fairly confident. I was totally wrecked the night before with nerves but standing in the water before the race started - I felt great.

All that changed rather quickly.

Wave started and I waded out, went freestyle stroke 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 - thought to myself, "man, it's funny that people hyperventilate on the swim" and GASP!!!! hyperventilated.

Totally, completely freaked out. I could not catch my breath, I could not settle myself down, I could not put my head in the water - heck, I couldn't even bring myself to put my ARMS in the water! Flipped over on my back and proceeded to backstroke the entire thing. Just kicking though. It was exhausting - I could not breathe at all. And could NOT turn back on my stomach - seeing the water freaked me out.

Had to grab on to the life boats 2 separate times, I was so freaked. Seriously contemplated having them haul my sorry a$$ in twice. Decided to tough it out and I guess I'm glad I did but wow.... That was honestly one of the scariest things I've ever done. And I normally consider myself fairly brave - but today I was a giant - well, insert your own choice word here. If you were on the course anywhere near me, you probably heard me audibly whimpering the entire time.

Yea..... humbling.

I was so mad coming out of the water and into transition, I don't even remember what I did. All I know is that I was THRILLED to be on land. As I ran out of the water, I must have been rockin some serious mad-face because as I see amyjo and craig - craig's yelling something on the bullhorn and as I approach, amyjo says something like 'are you ok?' and craig slowly lowers his bullhorn like 'don't disturb the beast' . I was MAD. sooooo MAD. stupid water.

I cheered up when I saw the other donkeys yelling and hollering - but I was mostly just running as fast as I could away from the water though - i didn't want it to catch me and make me swim in it again.


I actually felt kind of good on the bike - but I must have been pretty gassed because this was slower than I was on the duathlon a couple of weeks ago and i felt like I was pushing WAY harder today. I was still coughing up lake water and trying to catch my breath for the fist half of this. djdavey caught me at 27 minutes which frankly - shouldn't he have caught me earlier? I mean, really.....

Also - someone said 'hi stacey' to me about 3 or 4 miles in and I have no idea who it was (you were going to fast! which..argh! jealous) so hi back and who were you mystery man!?!?!?!

Oh - and my chain kept slipping but whatever. It was like my bike was saying 'yea, we're gonna go in THIS gear and YOU'RE just going to deal with it'.. yea, the bike made me it's b!tch today.

My feet were totally numb but I didn't feel too bad coming into the second transition. I kept thinking I was forgetting something to take on the run but hello - shoes, race number, clothes - what else do I need? Not sure what I thought I was missing (turns out it was my mo-jo).

What would I differently? Yea.... I would pack my mo-jo!

UGH. This run totally sucked. I felt like if I could just get through the bike and the swim, I would rock the run. NOPE. I was 100% gassed by this point. I think I held it together ok on the bike but I was spent by the time I got to the run. It was, how you say, being no fun. My legs felt awful - just no push at all. I stopped and walked a few times - the only thing that kept me from walking the entire first mile is knowing that djdavey was about to pass me as he came in on his last mile and I didn't feel like dealing with the death glare. (turned out he was so focused he wouldn't have even noticed - I'll remember that next time when I feel like walking!!) Of course, immediately after he passed, I think I walked for about 2 minutes.

Felt WAY better after the turn around though - FINALLY started getting some feeling back in my legs and was able to feel like I was actually running. Oy.

I think my crappy run had everything to do with the fact that I hyperventilated for about 14 minutes straight on the swim - I just had nothing left on the run. Soo.... yea, I should probably learn how to swim. because I'm kind of an ok runner.


After the race, I found the donkeys and hollered and yelled for the rest of the donks coming in - then I got really cold, realized I should probably put some dry stuff on.

Lesson learned - I am either never going to do a tri again OR I am going to spend all summer in a lake learning how to swim. Verdicts still out. Unfortunately, the people who do tris are WAY more addicting than the tri itself so I can see myself suffering through this again just for the fun afterwards.

And if you're into times (like I am!) my final time was 1:39

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Peruse this!

I was at Barnes and Noble this morning, enjoying a lovely time perusing the periodicals and java. Well, I more drank than perused the java. I'm not sure how you would peruse java. Since to peruse is "to examine or consider with attention and in detail" (I swear to god it is, look it up if you don't believe me! Go on, I dare ya! Yea, I'm talking to you Scott Kelly.)

Anyway... I was speaking of java. More specifically, I was perusing said java. Man - peruse is such a twinky word. I'm going to stop using it now. Peruse has been retired. Done, dead to me. Over. finit. Finished. I shall pursue a word to replace peruse.


(editor's note - this is where the ADD kicked in and a completely new train of thought was jumped on)
I spent a lot of time in edit this week banging my head on a keyboard watching aggravating, frustrating, non-working videos. (which, after much coaxing, did finally come around to the 'moderately awesome' stage) When I wasn't banging my head, I was watching the pinwheel of death while footage rendered. Rendering is the most aggravating part of working in video. In order for playback on a video to be clean, the footage has to be "rendered" - this can take anywhere from a minute to an hour. Sometimes it's an overnight thing. There's a little progress bar that charts the progress but that bar is a big fatty McFatHead liar - it will say 7 minutes, but really it means 45. It will say 1 minute, but really it means an hour. It builds hope and then crushes you like a beer can on a strongman's forehead.

I don't exactly know what I was doing when I made up this song but at some point during my stint in Cambodia, I mean, at my last job, this song got stuck in my head. Now every time I see the render progress bar, it pops in my head.

::ahem:: ::clears throat::

(Sung to the tune of the dreidel song )
Render, render, render
Oh render I will play
And when the render's ready
Oh video I will play

WITHOUT FAIL .... literally kids - EVERY SINGLE TIME I render, I sing this song in my head. Do you have any idea how many times a day I see that freaking render status bar? Do you realize how often I must sing that little ditty? They should make this goy an honorary Jew for the amount of times I shlep that schmaltzy song around in my head. I can kvetch with the best of em so I say bat mitzvah me up. (clearly my yiddish ain't too shabby either! thanks princeton!)

Speaking of kvetching... I was searching for music this morning and I love checking out people's imixes to get ideas for new stuff to listen to but holy cow! Some of the names those kids on come up with for their iMix titles! "White egg with nothing inside"... "Dead Flowers in Memphis" ... "Instruh Mental" (ooohh.. I get it!)
In my day we just labeled em Mix Tape #1, Mix Tape #2, Mix Tape #3.....

kids.... such smendriks

So today at Barnes and Noble, a book caught my eye and I burst out laughing in the middle of the store. It's always awesome to draw attention to the fact that you're a little nuts by belly laughing right by the self-help books.

This was the book - now settle in for story hour.

One night after work, back when I was at VH1, my friend Jill and I convinced our buddy Steve to come to Bennigans and have a drink with us. We loved hitting up the tourist crap bars in times square because they had the best happy hours. And they were usually relatively empty. I mean, seriously - who goes to TGIFriday's in Times Square? (answer - a shockingly huge amount of people..... why would you go to nyc and go to TGIFridays?? It makes no sense) But Jill and I had scoped out Bennigans which was on 8th and 48th-ish - just far enough off the times square madness but still a crappy chain with an awesome happy hour. Perfect for a quick "decompress" beer before heading home.

Our friend Steve hardly ever came out with us so this particular night jill and I were all happy that we finally dragged this dude out for a beer. We take him to Bennigans and figure we'd start there and see what ensued.

Almost right when we get to the bar, an older guy walks up to our table and tells us he's a producer from 20/20. He has a crew with him and hands us his card so we know he's legit. Plus, he has that tired old dinosaur look of an old timer news producer so we pretty much believed him without the cameras and business card. He asks Steve if he would play pool with this guy for a segment they were producing for 20/20 - Jill and I say it's cool if they take our friend as long as they buy us a round. They did and so we happily sent Steve off upstairs to play pool.

So Steve is playing pool with this guy, casually chatting with him, cameras are rolling, nothing much in terms of excitement though. Jill and I are chatting with the producer and he's telling us that his daughter did an internship with VH1 and it was the worst experience of her life. Apparently she had to transcribe a bunch of tapes and didn't get to go on a lot of shoots.... uh, yea dude - that's what being an intern is. He actually gave us his card with this almost sympathetic "if you ever want to get out of there" tone.

After a few beers, we look over and Steve is doing an interview with the producer and the guy he was playing pool with. We can tell they're breaking some sort of news to him but Steve is pretty much the coolest cucumber ever and barely even blinks.... the producer comes over and tells us that oh, btw, the dude your friend is playing pool is actually a chick. We're like, "yea and?"

Steve was completely not phased, Jill and I are like, whatever and the producer and camera crew are a little flustered because there's absolutely zero shock value at the "reveal" - by going to Bennigans they told us thought they would find bible thumping tourists from Kansas who would be simply shocked to find out that this he is a she and throw a fit on camera. Instead, they found 3 jaded new yorkers who couldn't have cared less if it was a turtle in disguise.

Turns out the he-she was a girl who had spent a year living her life as a man as research for this book she wrote called "Self-Made Man." 20/20 was doing a special on her - they were looking to gather "shocked" reactions. She must have had a pretty good press agent because we saw a lot of her in the following months. It was like - oh, there's that super boring chick from the bar!

I never read the book so I'm not sure what she discovered in her research but ummm... yea, isn't that sort of a dead horse? Women and men are treated differently. Also, a table has four legs and a dog barks. And Scott Kelly will hunt birds.

Of course, we never got Steve to come to Bennigans with us again. And sadly - they closed the place down shortly after.
Sigh.....
there goes one of nyc's greatest establishments (in the crappy cheap beer category!)

Monday, June 1, 2009

uuhhh....

Tonight I mistakenly washed my face with moisturizer instead of cleanser.

That is all. I just had to share. Is it possible I'm tired? Nah... just blonde.

Friday, May 29, 2009

is that a real problem?

Tomorrow, I run for vomit.

No, seriously - tomorrow I am running the 3rd Annual 5k Run/Walk to Stop the Cycle of Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome.

This is gonna be the best race shirt EVER.

my better is kreepy?

I thought my obsession with Stacy Wall would end after my trip to LA but it lives on and on in the form of a song. I realize that written out, that admission is HIGHLY creepy. Actually - it's even creepy with a K. Kreepy. But there it is. I can not stop watching his Nike "My Better is Better" commercials and I can NOT get that song out of my head!

The song is "List of Demands" in case you too become obsessed and need to immediately download it into your music playing device.

"My Better is Better" commercial

After watching the commercial shoot for NM and the unbelievable minute detail that goes into every shot, I watch this Nike commercial with total awe now. I can not imagine how long it took to shoot this thing because for our commercial, we only had 2 sports, 1 "action" and that was a 3 day shoot. So with this - many different sports, a lot of different actions, talking.... oy. I hope someone brought my little mr wall a LOT of coffee because I would guess he didn't sleep for about a week during this shoot.

A commercial shoot is just a completely different beast - best worked on by extremely Type A personalities with a penchant for self inflicted misery.

And for more fun - memorize these lines and taunt your co-workers with them
My quick and my fast had a baby named McSpeedy

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

HOTlanta!!

Ugh - HOTlanta indeed! I'm in Atlanta for a 3 day shoot this week and oh my... humidity much? It's not even all that hot, it's just humid. How do people live here but more importantly, how do the fancy ladies keep their hair from looking like koosh balls?

I totally forgot that southern ladies follow rules. Dress pretty, do your hair, do your make-up, don't swear, don't be crass, wear heels (even when walking the dog) etc etc etc. Sigh - being a fancy lady must be simply exhausting! Thank god I'm not a fancy lady.

sidenote: the "f" on my keyboard is taking a union break so if you see a word spelled 'uck' from me - go ahead and assume the worst.

Our interviews wrapped up at around 7 tonight and since the people here talk reeeaaaaalllllllyyy slowly, I decided that I needed to get a run in. So I headed out down a road named "Peachtree Road" per the suggestion of the long-winded concierge. I envisioned myself jogging happily along a shaded country road, perhaps snagging the occasional peach for hydration along the way. I mean, with a name like Peachtree Road, would you expect anything different?

My little country road was a 6 lane highway. No peaches in site. There were a lot of traffic cones and closed sidewalks. I guess the traffic cones were peach colored? Whatever - Peachtree Road FAIL!

And my legs just do not agree with the humidity. I was miserable for the first two miles and seriously contemplated turning around and crawling home like a defeated puppy (what do puppies get defeated at anyway? Croquet?) But then I saw something that changed my mind. I kept seeing signs for "Brookhaven" this and that. I was like hmm..... Brookhaven? Where do I know that name from? Sounds like a lovely name for a mental hospital. Maybe I could check myself in because I'm clearly nuts for continuing to run when I feel this crappy. And then it hit me - omg!!! Brookhaven!! As in the Brookhaven Obesity Clinic!?!?!?! As in that awesome show on TLC where the super obese people wearing moomoos check themselves into the super expensive fat clinic and then get their friends to sneak them KFC and then complain that they aren't losing any weight?? THAT Brookhaven? Dude! Reality show holy ground!

oh wait......

Ok. THIS is why I’m running. Because I don’t want to end up in the Brookhaven Obesity Clinic and with my very own TLC or Discovery channel special. I don’t want them to name a crane after me – as in, “tonight on TLC, a very special episode where we learn about a new crane that was developed to lift a woman who is now the size of three hippos. The crane will be named Nash and the dedication ceremony will be led by Roseanne Barr”

I got my mojo flowing after envisioning my TLC promo and started picking up the pace.

I couldn’t find my turn around but I did find a castle wall. I was like – DUDE! What is a castle wall doing here? Turned out I was passing the campus of Oglethorpe college. I have no idea what is at Oglethorpe college but the castle wall intrigued me so I took a little detour through the campus. Which – wow!!! Gorgeous! And the castle wall backed up to a baseball field. Ok, random, but super cool. The Georgia Shakespeare Festival was apparently going on so I decided to honor the muse and recite a few lines from the Bard. Macbeth, Hamlet, Midsummer’s Night Dream, Twelfth Night… of course, I don’t actually know any lines from Twelfth Night so I just hollered “12th Night! 12th Night!” a bunch of times and then was escorted off the campus by two men dressed in Barney the dinosaur outfits.

Ok, that last bit was a lie, but really, how cool would that have been to write about?

Oglethrope is also a really fun name to say. I would like to go to there. I would enjoy wearing a sweatshirt with the school name and just saying the name over and over.
Oglethorpe!
Oglethrope!
Oglethrope!

Is it like Beetlejuice where you say it three times and he appears? I wonder what an Oglethorpe is? I would guess a combination of accounting professor and squid.

Humidity has made me a bit loopy. I did have a flash of realization on my way back through Brookhaven that I probably wouldn't end up there - but only because I don't like KFC. I don't care how many coupons Oprah gives away for it.

So eventually (after an eternity) my run ended. I ran into my two camera guys as I was walking into the hotel driveway and they started heckling me from across the street hollering “Hey! That’s not running!” Just at that moment another girl ran right past me and they yell out “THAT’S running! And she’s beating you!” Ha – funny guys.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

so far in LA....

The universe has been very kind to me lately. I had asked it to send me deodorant and it did. I asked it for a trip to LA and it sent me a plane ticket.

The deodorant thing was pretty awesome - I was almost out and I showed up to bootcamp in the morning worried that I wouldn't have enough for work later on and poof - a woman arrives handing out samples from a giant box of exactly the brand that I would have bought! (dove cucumber clear if you're wondering what keeps me so fresh) So weird!

Similarly, I had asked the universe if it might, pretty please, send me to LA. I have been jonesing for a trip out to cali lately and my wish was granted in the form of a behind-the-scenes shoot this week.

But now the universe is playing terrible tricks on me because here I am in gorgeous LA (santa monica to be precise) and I have a cold/allergies like I haven't had in forever. My ears are on the verge of popping right off of my head - I think they want to go on a trip as well. I will not allow such trips. My ears need to stay on my head, thank you very much.

I have a half-marathon in 2 weeks and all I want to do is go for runs along the beach but noooo... the universe prefers me holed up in my hotel room, falling asleep at 4:30pm. So I am thinking that me and the universe need to exchange some words. I mean, that's awesome that the universe granted my two wishes, but really - why the mean taunting?

'Ok nash, you can go to LA but you're going to have to enjoy it from the vantage of your hotel window.' (I have an awesome view of the mountains so that's nice. Oh and there's a little baseball field below me so that's fun too. I watched a little last night and cheered on the team in the cuter uniforms)

Ok universe, you've had your little joke, now let me out! I'll bake you cookies or something! (crossing fingers the universe isn't familiar with my lack of culinary skills)

Saturday, May 2, 2009

good obsessed

Next week, I am heading out to LA for a shoot at the Trump national golf course and also at some giant stadium. The last time I was at a trump golf course, I got to interview the Donald. But this time, I get to interview Stacy Wall!!!! 'Stacy Wall? Who the heck is that?' Ahh..... he is my new obsession - and I mean that in a totally non-creepy way. Well, as non-creepy as an obsession with a person can be.

It's totally ok to be obsessed with inanimate objects, but the second that obsession moves onto something with opposable thumbs, well, then we're in creepy-stalker-ville.

Ok, so I rescind. I'm not obsessed. I am INTRIGUED. Highly...

So Stacy Wall is only the genius behind the most awesome commercial ever made EVER. One that spoke to my heart and soul. One that became part of my blood stream. One that I quoted for about a year.

The T-mobile cheeleader commercial!!

Those lines are now stuck back in my head and I would like to apologize to all the people that have to see me in the next few weeks as all conversation will be peppered with "can I like get a new battery?"

Sunday, April 5, 2009

dear heart, you ain't worth that much

I've been looking into getting a heart rate monitor lately. I like doing stuff with my heart and I would like to know how my heart feels about that. So a heart rate monitor seems like a good way to find out.

I came across this little doozy during my search...

Ok, so at $350, it actually does the workout FOR you, right? I know that there are GPS units out there that are like 7 thousand dollars or something but sheesh.... how much information do you really need in order to work out? (and let me say upfront that I fully expect to spend 350 in the near future on a fancy hr monitor/speed/gps thingy because I will succumb to the IWANTITNOWITISSOPRETTY monster.)

Another digression: that "I want it now it is so pretty" was submitted to my vocabulary by one cousin lynda via an email discussing purses. She improves my language skillz.

But getting back to Mr Fancy Watch. I wonder if it would do interval workouts or push-ups for me.... surely there's a button or setting for that, right? My "write clever stuff" button on my laptop is F7 so I'm assuming Fancy has something similar.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Conan and Bloomberg r like 2 peas in a pod

I'm a huge Conan O'Brien fan even though I hardly ever watch his show anymore. A) past my bedtime and B) john stewart is currently bogarting my DVR storage.

The thing is that with Conan, you don't need to be a consistent watcher to know what's up or what's going on. It's kind of always the same. And I don't mean that in a negative way at all - it's just that his style of comedy is consistent. Consistently comfortable. Consistently silly. Consistently easily digestible.

I had recorded Inside the Actors Studio from forever ago when he was on and I finally got around to watching it. He had a line that made me pause the recording, contemplate it for a second and then race to grab a pen and paper to jot it down because it was so simple but so true. And my refrigerator likes quotes. (and that adorable picture of Demitri Martin currently gracing the freezer)

He said: "Nobody really knows what they're doing. And there's two ways to go with that information. One is to be afraid. And the other is to be liberated. And I choose to be liberated."

Ok, not exactly earth shattering new logic but it struck a chord with me.

My other favorite quote is one from Mayor Bloomberg that hung next to my bed forever. When he said this, he was at a fashion awards show of all places - the CDFA addressing Proenza Schouler if you're interested - and he said: "Don't listen to anyone. Because if you truly are innovative, no one is going to think you're doing it right."

Those two go together like a glorious, well crafted, PB&J sandwich.

Because it's so true. If you really are doing something new, different and innovative, it's going to feel completely wrong at first. And that's a really hard emotion to work through. We're such cows in that way. And by cows, I mean, sheep. Except it seemed funnier to write 'cows.'

Anyway - our herd mentality is why there aren't more geniuses in the world and tis a damn shame.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

the secret ingredient

I have a relative who's name I will not name for the safety and sanity of all family members related to him. However, this mystery man's initials rhyme with SAG or BAG or HAG or CRAG for those of you that like guessing games.

The relative has a strange culinary shall we say, fondness, for making casseroles. His casseroles are legendary. Not because they're good ... er.... ok, well that's kind of rude but really - they're not always that good. Let's just throw the cards on the table bearing the weight of the casserole and be honest. They are always filling. And satisfying. And fill space in the stomach. But really, the best part about the casserole creation is the time you spend trying to figure out just what the heck is on your fork.

If your family ever struggles for compelling dinner time conversation, I highly recommend a casserole.

Over the Christmas holidays he treated us to one of his special casseroles and there was much lively discussion concerning what had made it into this particular one. It was.... um, well - it was mostly edible.

Today - mystery revealed! The secret ingredients were... may I have a cyber drum roll please....

Bison

Goose

Potato chips

and......

Baklava

the 3 letter word

I'm kind of obsessed with the word "fat" right now. It's one of those words that has an immediate, jaw dropped reaction. If you jokingly call someone "fat" - the person you said it to might get the joke but the people standing around will inevitably get that "omg, did she just say that? Is this cool? Should we be laughing too? ok, hehehe, yea, fat, haha, funny, omg, I'm so uncomfortable I think I just peed my pants a little..." well, you know what I mean.

It has a punch in the stomach kind of reaction. It's truly one of the worst insults you can fling at someone because it's so base and raw. Ugly, whatever. Jerk, who cares. Butt nugget, right back at ya. Fucktard, well that's just silly.

But FAT. ouch. That one stings.

Because how many people look in the mirror every morning and say that to themselves? I'm sure there's some people out there who can brush their teeth without looking at their stomach and sighing. (And whoever they are, I totally am forming a club against them. Scott Kelly, I'm looking at you.) But the majority use "fat" as that horrible self-hating word you throw at yourself. And I don't know - maybe I'm just speaking for myself here. But the reaction that I see when that awful 3 letter word drops has me thinking that I'm probably not the only one.

There's such shame associated with it. When you're a smoker and you get called a smoker, yea, it's not like it's a compliment, but it's an identity. When you're a fatty and you get called a fatty - why is it such a jolt? It's almost like the 'n' word - its only ok if I call myself that word.

It's too bad there's such a deep, intense emotional connection to that word. Diets might actually work if we didn't all freak out at the sound of the word "fat".

Sunday, February 22, 2009

And the Oscar goes to....

I haven't seen a movie in almost a year. Not sure how that streak happened but now I'm kind of proud of it. What I'm NOT proud of is the fact that my last movie was "27 Dresses." I wish it had been a really, really awful flick - then when people would ask why I've been a movie starvation diet, I would respond with something snobby like "well, my palette has simply been ruined, I'm afraid." As it is, 27 Dresses is neither terrible nor awesome so I'm left with no excuse other than I just don't care to go to movies anymore. How common.

Anyway - in honor of my non-movie-going streak... Oh wait, no, actually this is in honor of the ceremony that will mean absolutely nothing to me tonight. Actually, that is untrue as well for surely I will have several snarky, rude and unnecessary remarks regarding the fashion. If only I was a good person totally above commenting on someone else's choices. Ha - that will happen the fifth of never.

ANYWAY....

I am really getting off track today. The whole point of this was to make everyone watch the BEST Oscar acceptance speech ever.
Watch it!!!! (and then try it!)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Men in tights

I continued my weird running streak yesterday with an 8k in the snow. Ok, well, technically it had stopped snowing, but it was still blowing off the trees making it at least appear to be snowing. It was actually quite gorgeous. Very Norman Rockwell-esque. I kept waiting for santa to hand a coke to a small boy in suspenders.

That, surprisingly, did not happen. Instead of small boys in suspenders, there were tall skinny men wearing tights.

It's weird that the one place men can get away with wearing tights is running outside along the road. Well, that and a pride-fest parade.

Yesterday was Valentine's Day. And also what would have been my dad's 60th birthday. I probably would have said something along the lines of "dude, you're OLD!" and I'm sure there would have been an equally smart reply. But wow - 60. He was 37 when he passed away and as sick as he was when he died, it's hard to imagine him as anything other than the vital, energized and exuberant man he was. I'm sure he'd still be kicking it on the tennis court, playing basketball and organizing everything for everyone.

Whenever events or reminders of my dad happen, it never fails that I hear Phil Collins "Take Me Home" at some point during the day. This was one of my dad's favorite songs and I remember asking my mom what the story was behind the song a few years after he died. She told me that there was one day where she was walking with him in the hospital and as they passed the nurses station this song was playing. He stopped and asked my mom to wait so he could listen to the song finish. I would guess that was his theme song - maybe even his fight song - during those long stays.

Sure enough - I heard that song yesterday enjoying some beers with friends at Mo's Irish Pub. I'm guessing my dad was pretty proud of my 8k time ... Or more likely - he was thinking I should have ran faster ;)

but hey - 43:10, ya know, not bad ... but I probably will be faster next time.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

phew

Last night I lost a sock.

But then I found it this morning.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Numbering my confusion

Ok, so truth time.

I don't actually keep a running list of things that confuse in numbered order. I just pick random numbers.

I know. Appalling that I would blatantly lie.

But imagine my surprise just now when I realized that I had picked the number 23 twice! What gives 23? Why did you pop into my head again? You're not my favorite number. Your neighbor 24 is one of my favs - but 23? I have no special feelings for you. I'm sorry to be so blunt and harsh but it's true. You're just a number. A number that I have to pass over in order to get to 24.

If I was the kind of person who examined dreams or read tea leafs I would be totally fascinated by my whole picking the number 23 thing twice. But the reality is I'm not - I just find it amusing and I like to write about amusing stuff.

However, I'm still intrigued and I may have to rethink this number 23 thing... I think I'll give it a trial run as my favorite number and see how it goes.

So number 23, you and me is officially courtin!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

#23 on the list of things that confuse me

Celine Dion

On so many levels.

First of all - Celine Dion is without question the worst dancer in the universe. So how does it work that the best choreographer in the universe, Mia Michaels ends up working with her? In her Vegas show A new brand new day something new day I don't know what the title is it doesn't matter she confuses me anyway whatever... ack, stop. ok.

So Mia Michaels is brilliant. Celine Dion is not. (although I grudgingly will admit that's debatable) Mia surrounds Celine with some of the best dancers in the world and manages to make Celine look good. Thought about logically, it should be the other way around. However, since we have already established that Mia Michaels is brilliant, it TOTALLY works. She manages to make Celine's horribly awkward movements appear quirky and deliberate. Genius.

Side bar - I ALWAYS spell genius wrong. Always. Crap.

Back to Celine. How does she get her voice to warble like that? Why is it that her hair always seems to have movement to it? Is she is followed around by a giant portable fan? Why does she always close her eyes when she is singing? Why does her arm always raise up in the air like that? What is she pointing at? Does she have any idea how crazy she looks?

Ok - but all that said - why is it that whenever her Vegas show is on, I always seem to accidentally find it and accidentally leave it on? I really, really want to hate on Celine Dion but I can't! It's like trying to scold an orphan who spits on your shoe. You know you should tell that orphan off and teach him a lesson but you go to do it and 'awwww, but he's an orphan!' and D'Oh! foiled! That's me and Celine.

God help me but when I hear "To love you more" I don't even fight the urge to grab my chest and sing passionately along - and then when the music stops for that one hot second and then comes in all big again. Sigh. Magic.

Damn you Celine!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

there is such a thing as too direct....

One of the things that I love about Wisconsin is the straight talk approach that many people take. No fuss, no filler – maybe a little too nice sometimes, but for the most part, honest and straight forward.

However.

When it comes to marketing strategies, I am usually a fan of having a little bit of Рer, mystery. A bit of élan. A touch of class, perhaps.

Every day I drive past this company in its little strip mall. And every day I cringe when I see the sign by the side of the road.

Baby Preview.

Do you know what Baby Preview does? Can you take a wild guess? Yes. They are an ultrasound company.

You literally get a preview of your baby.

Or maybe even someone else’s baby. Hey, why not convince a preggers to come in and take some glamour shots inside her lady business? Really, whatever flips your pancakes. Because from this delicate name, we’ve clearly established that this joint is nothing if not elegant and sophisticated.

Now come on Baby Preview – isn’t there any other way to establish your core competency without punching me in the face?

Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Ukraine disapoints me.

It's never easy to be a gymnastics fan - your favorites are always either growing and quitting or becoming head cases or blowing it at crucial moments or just plain sucking when they're supposed to be rocking. However, being a fan of Ukrainian gymnastics is particularly painful. Like, stab self in stomach painful. This team used to be known for quality and innovation but now the most innovating thing about the Ukraine is the way it constantly manages to find new and exciting ways to disappoint it's fans.

The country that gave us these talents....
Lilia Podkopayeva
Tatiana Lysenko
Alina Kozich
Tatiana Gutsu
....to name only a few (the few that I felt like looking up and could remember how to spell their darn names)

Has now given us THIS....

Mega sigh

Perhaps she was a bit rattled because she did just come off the uneven bars where she did THIS...

But in case you were wondering what kind of progress she's made lately.... WELL... (make sure you catch the end, it's er - spectacular?)

It's just so sad to watch a country with that much history and some truly talented gymnasts flop around with falls, head cases and just plain stupid mistakes. This is a team that has the ability to place in the medals every time but it's like they hold a team meeting before every big competition and say "ok guys, how should we totally blow it THIS time???"
Can you guys PLEASE stop having that meeting?

I think I have a new name for the Ukraine - "Ughkraine"
(clever huh?)

The return of Lord Prissy Pants


The good news is that Lord Prissy Pants has returned to his family. The bad news is that he's currently frozen to the ground.

Am working towards undertanding how my little gnome could have ended up in said position.