A Day Brightener

This post has been making me snicker all day long.

The Runs

February 21, 2011

So I have this section on the blog up there called 'The Runs.' You're supposed to send me your running questions, and I'm supposed to answer them. Except I've never answered them.

I'm about to do that right now.

I think I have five or so questions that I need to dig out of my inbox. Some of them are from a looooong time ago.

If you happen to have a question, email me really soon and I'll include yours in there, too. Otherwise, you might have to wait until 2014 for an answer.

I Need a Therapist. And a Coach.

February 18, 2011

Jared, who happens to be the most supportive husband on the planet, read my Boston post yesterday. And last night, while he was folding laundry in our bedroom, he let me know that he thought it was total and complete crap.

"You still care," he said.

"No I don't," I insisted, "I'm over it."

"How long ago did you decide that you want to run the Boston Marathon?"

"In 1995 when I first read an article about it in Runners' World," I replied. "But I swear I'm over it."

"No you're not. You're discouraged that it just got harder. You're not over it, that's not you."

And so on and so forth.

He says he knows me better than I know myself.

I say he farts every time I walk into the bedroom and it's starting to piss me off.

He says he knows that I'll never give up on my dream.

I say I know he'll never get a manner.

Truth is, I don't know what in the hell I'm feeling. I guess you can say that I'm simultaneously discouraged and encouraged--and that's what makes us human, being able to feel two opposite things at the very same time, right? I mean, buffalo can't do that, can they?

So there. Whatever. I'm conflicted. About something that's not so big in the grand scheme of things, but on my mind a lot of the time.

Maybe I still care. Maybe I really don't care so much anymore.

Maybe I should drink some melted butter. I've always wanted to do that.

My Thoughts on the Boston Marathon Stuff

February 18, 2011
(for those of you who care and know what I'm even talking about...)

I just had a realization.

I'm done with my whole Boston Marathon dream. I don't think I'd wear the jacket anyway.

It's not that I don't think I can qualify under the new rolling admission standards and the 3:35 age group cutoff--because I know I'm capable of all of that. I was a great runner in high school, I can still run a sub-six mile without much trouble, and I'm lucky to have a VO2 max that allows me to gain fitness quickly.

I know, in my heart of hearts that I'm capable of qualifying for Boston--I just haven't had my day.

But you know what? The new rolling admission system is already stressing me out, and I haven't even run a qualifying race yet. I sat up last night doing math over and over and over in my head...

"....Okay, so if I go ten minutes under the 3:40, what's the probability that I'll get in? What if I go five minutes under? What's the pace for a 3:35? What'll happen to the BAA website when registration opens up to all qualifiers?"

If it sounds complicated, that's because it is. And let me tell you, the last thing I need is one more complicating factor in my life.

Do I think the BAA is wrong for the way they're approaching registration? Of course not. They own the race, and they can do whatever they want with it. Honestly, if they required that you walk across the finish line on your hands to be able to register, I guess I'd just start practicing my gymnastics skills if I wanted it badly enough.

I've seen a lot of comments from enthusiastic, well-attituded runners that say things like, "Well, just another reason to train harder!" and "I guess I'll have to get faster!"

You won't hear that from me.

If I train harder, it's because I want to train harder--not because the BAA has cornered me into making that choice.

If I get faster, it's only because I've been working harder for my own sense of self-satisfaction--not because of an outside standard that's been placed on me and my community.

My motivation to run comes from somewhere in my gut, not from the BAA. From this point forward, you'll never hear me say that I'm trying to qualify for Boston--I'm just trying to run my race. I'm trying to reach my personal potential. I'm trying as hard as I possibly can to do what I love, and to do it well.

From this point on, I'll never feel disappointed when I cross a marathon finish line again, because damn it, I just finished a marathon. There should never be any shame in that. And these days, even with a respectable "BQ," there's not guarantee that you'll get to run the race anyway.

Now don't get me wrong here, if I happen to meet the Boston qualifying standard, you bet your ass I'll try to register and run that race. But the difference is, this is no longer about being good enough for them, this is about being good enough for me.

I'm not planning to get a boob job because the media tells me I should, and I'm not about to take on a different career just because my paycheck seems wimpy compared to other peoples'. I'll never convert to a different religion that the masses accept as more mainstream, and you can mark my words right now--I'm not gonna start training harder because the bar's been raised by a race organizer.

I want to get faster. There's nothing, nothing, that beats of feeling of running quickly and with ease for mile after mile after mile. But I want to get faster for me, not for the jacket--and believe me, up until today, I really, really, realllllly wanted that jacket.

So I'll run, and I'll try to run well. I'll run the races I feel like running, when I feel like running them. I'll have babies when I want more babies--not after I finally get to run Boston. And I'll celebrate every single marathon finish like, well, like I just finished a marathon.

Thank you for the changes, BAA. You've finally set me free. I mean that.

What else can I say? The sun is shining and it's a great day for a fast ten miler.

P.S. There's another new post down there.
P.P.S. I hope it doesn't sound like I'm bagging any BQers out there. I think you're all incredible, and I'm jealous no matter what I say! This is about my feelings only...nothing to do with anyone else!

C'mon! They'll Rip Your Face Off!!!!

February 17, 2011

I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned this before, but James, my five-year-old, is ridiculously picky about the shirts he'll wear. Basically, if it doesn't have something super fierce and obnoxiously gigantic screen-printed on the front, he won't take a second glance.

Luckily, this doesn't pose too much of a problem in the warmer months when Spider Man t-shirts and Lego BatMan tank tops flow like wine. But I'll tell ya, dressing my kid on Sundays and during these cold winter months might be enough to do me in.

It's not a rare morning when James shows up in the kitchen wearing a Star Wars t-shirt over a thick, winter sweater. And this past Sunday, he actually came downstairs wearing a super nice church outfit--khakis, a belt, a tie, a white button-down--with a BumbleBee golf shirt on top of it all. I actually thought it looked pretty dope. I was definitely cool with his outfit choice. However, for reasons unbeknownst to me, Jared most certainly wasn't.

He opted to take on the good fight in the name of reverence, respect, and Jesus.

Better him than me.

Now I know what you're thinking: Amy, why don't you just buy the kid some sweatshirts with crap printed on the front? And some super hero ties?

Well let me tell you why I won't. Because we have enough hand-me-downs to keep this child covered through college. If there's any money getting spent on clothes, you'd better believe that shiz'll be hanging in my closet.


This morning, Jared thought he'd found a way to completely avoid the daily outfit fiasco--a long sleeved shirt with a bear printed on the front.

No dice.

You know, since the bear couldn't fly, or run faster than the speed of sound, or navigate a spaceship--basically, since the bear is a naturally occurring entity--James refused to wear the shirt.

Finally, after a full five minutes of back and forth between my husband and my kid, I knelt down, looked James bang in the eye and said, "Listen bud, bears rip peoples' faces off ALL THE TIME. EVERY SINGLE DAY. That's cool. Now wear the damn shirt."

And he did.

The End.

A Very Recycled Valentine's Day

February 14, 2011

See this card?



It's two bears sleeping in bed. He's hot, she's cold--Jared and I could be those bears.

But that's not the interesting part. This is the interesting part...

I sh!t you not, I've been giving Jared this same, unsigned card every year for Valentine's Day since 2007. He's gotten this card in a crappy apartment in Texas, my parents' house in Massachusetts, and our house up here in Maine. Every year I hand it to him in the unsealed envelope and say, "Oh my word, isn't it perfect? Those bears might as well be us!"

He snickers, gives a little bouncy nod and goes, "Pfft! You're totally right."

Then he puts the card on the table, walks away to investigate something shiny/stinky/loud, and I slip the card back into the drawer of my sewing table....until next year.

You know, just my little contribution to saving the planet.

Change of Plans and The Retro Lunch Hour

February 9, 2011

Jared and I had a ski date planned for today. We had an insane deal on lift tickets and a babysitter all lined up. We were planning to stop along the side of the road for pee breaks, and sing to our very favorite songs from the retro morning show. You know, the music that wasn't released until after I'd lost my virginity, but now it's 'retro' because I'm so damn old? Does anyone else hate that, too?

Anyway, we were planning a totally perfect day of swishing, and laughing, and falling, and marital joy. And then we saw the weather report. Sure it's sunny and it looks really beautiful through the window, but it's also 0 degrees with a wind chill of -32 and the ski mountain.

Needless to say, there will be no skiing on this fine Wednesday.

Instead, I headed into work for two or three hours while Jared stayed home with the kids. And then this afternoon, while James is at school, I'll hang with Maggie while Jared hauls firewood across our yard and into the basement. We'll probably fight a little bit, too. And there's a dog pee spot on the carpet that I need to work on.

Maybe -32 wouldn't have been so bad? Next time we'll probably brave it.

So seriously, does the 'Retro Lunch Hour' on the local radio station make anyone else want to crawl into a casket and nail down the lid? When did Nirvana become classic rock? Why is my metabolism so sluggish? When did I get this old?

Elder Dance-a-Lot: My YouTube Debut

February 7, 2011

There are a lot of days when I look back at my college years and think, "Dang. I really should have majored in [insert random field of study that I probably would have sucked at here]."

My missed opportunity changes drastically depending on my mood that day. Sometimes I pine for lots of money, other days it's about flexibility, and every now and again, I guess I just feel like smoking a touch of weed in a Vanagon down by the river. Nursing, art, finance, women's studies, pre-med, agriculture, education, equestrian studies--I've mourned my missed path in each of those fine fields.

Thanks to this weekend, I have one more major to add to my list of regrettable college 'should haves.'

Film Making.


Is it just me, or does everyone feel like they're on the verge of a really big break every time they post some crap on YouTube? Either way, I think I'm pretty famous today.

Someday My Prince Will Come

February 4, 2011

I'm a really fortunate person in a whole lot ways. Especially in the fact that I'm not married to a jealous man. I don't know what it is about jealous guys, but I have zero tolerance for that type of neediness.

Jealous guys and guys who drive automatic sedans--in both cases I'm like, "Dude, grow some nuts. Today."

But of course, we're human. He's a little bit jealous of my sewing talent, and I'm just the teensiest bit envious of the relationship he has with his German Shorthaired Pointer (that's a dog breed, not some crazy phallic nickname), but other than that, we're good.

Now I should admit, we're not big on the whole 'friends of the opposite sex' thing. I have a few and he has a few, but we have a pretty firm policy that we don't find ourselves alone with a person of the opposite sex unless they're a relative or it's a professional situation.

The last thing I need is some pretty lady stealing Jared, his dog, and his student loan debt away while I'm not looking.

So caution? Of course.

But jealousy? Not a whole lot...well, maybe a splash or two in this billion year old post.

This is why I was so surprised over what happened this morning.

I was perched in the middle of the kitchen, innocently sweeping the floor, singing 'Someday My Prince Will Come.'

He was like, "What are you singing?"

And I said, "Someday My Prince Will Come."

"That's what I thought. Why would you sing that?"

So I said, "You really want to know why I would sing that???? Really, Jared? Because I want to know why you know that song! Did I marry a softee or something?!?!?"

From that point on, it just got really, really messy.

This is exactly why I don't like jealous men. Drama, drama, drama.

Barrel Magazine

February 3, 2011

Check it out! I was featured in Barrel Magazine this month!

Before you know it, I'll be sleeping with Matt Lauer, or Sponge Bob, or someone else really fancy!

If you haven't read Barrel Magazine, go ahead an click on the link. It's super well done and completely fun to flip through.

Seriously, behold the fabulosity: