Sunday, February 13, 2005

Happy Valentine's Day!
A day early, but I'll be traveling tomorrow....

My own view of love, this Valentine's Day 2005? Paul Simon said it well in "Graceland":

And I see losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Everybody sees you're blown apart
Everybody feels the wind blow

And yet there goes Paul, bouncing down the road, pedal steel pushing him forward, and with these words:

And I may be obliged to defend
Every love, every ending
Or maybe there's no obligations now
Maybe I've a reason to believe
We all will be received
In Graceland

Thursday, February 10, 2005

After Work with the Crows
I've been listening to Counting Crows and loving their music. This is a band I don't hear anybody talking about these days. I'm guessing most of the hip folk see the Crows as woefully mainstream and tired. Well, whatever. I find their music powerful and inventive, the words lovely and provocative. Listen to "A Murder of One" or "A Long December" or "Recovering the Satellites." See if you don't agree. Do what works for you, by all means, but here's my MO: I get home from work, put the Trader Joe's Turkey Pot Pie in the oven (to be accompanied by a salad -- a bag of baby spinach with homemade honey-mustard dressing), go for my eight-miler, which feels good after having swum hard in the afternoon, get home, shower, take the pot pie out to let it cool, and then crank the music. A glass of wine (trading off with water; gotta rehydrate after the run) finds its way into my hand. Tonight it was a wacky old thing that had been buried in the scary basement of our office, a 99 Sokol Blosser White Reisling. Round and luscious, a little petrol, lots of apricot, kind of funky. Loved it. Anyway, it all went well together, songs about giving up and being given up upon, Turkey Pot Pie, five-year-old Oregon Reisling, the post-run high, the music vibrating through the floor, the anxiety fading, fading, fading into the slightest glimmer of rebirth. (Or was it simply the realization that it is all right and perhaps even proper to be angry, and to let that anger distill and to find its essence, to -- yes -- take oneself off the hook on this one. Completely.)

Workouts this week: Four swims in the 1500-2000 yard range, all just nonstop laps, just getting the stamina back; three runs, 5-8 miles apiece.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Running and Swimming
Well, it appears the extended illness of January 2005 will not go down in history as having permanently derailed my triathlon career. (I use the terms "history" and "career" loosely, of course.) Did a couple of runs earlier this week -- a 3.5 miler, then a 4.5 miler at 9 minutes/mile, then 10K in 48:40 (7:50/mile). Swam 1000 yards on Tuesday then 1500 on Thursday. No doubt I'm off my game, but not so much as I expected. If I had to, I'm sure I could run a 10-miler today in 90 minutes, or swim a mile in 34 minutes. I suppose that is the benefit of having trained more or less regularly (say, five to eight workouts a week) for three years.

So now it's time to get back on the bike after a three-month absence. I'm hoping my bike fitness returns quickly, but "hope" is not what will do the trick. There's time in the schedule to do rides on Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday mornings. Getting my ass out of bed and on the road -- that's the key. As always.