things i wish i had said, part 54

The truth: This story is true, and everything in it happened to me. But I could tell this story all day long. It’s nothing personal. People think my guts were quivering on the floor. People in the audience tell me they watched my naked, beating heart. Not so. No way. I would never really do that. I hide the truth from everyone, from friends, family, readers, and most of all from (Write it!) myself. Those stories I imagine I won’t ever tell: those are the personal ones.
— Leslie Pietrzyk

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just another morning conversation, part 68


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don’t it always seem to go

I was randomly looking at running stuff this morning when i came across the link.

she showed up around 2012. great blog. i always thought our blogs were a lot alike, except that she was really fast. and clever. and interesting. and i was … um. well.

I followed her, commenting occasionally and reading religiously. In a Presbyterian sort of way. But I guess you don’t notice when someone disappears. Until you notice.

she had a great hook. her post titles were song lyrics, which she would then identify at the end of the post. they tied into the theme of the post, but they were this entirely different level of cleverness. she told wonderful stories about heroic races, the quirkiness of life, and what the heck was going on underneath guys’ running shorts. the important things in life.  conversational style. super fast. True believer. and if you read her for a week, you felt like you were friends.

March 16, 2014 was her last post. She had just adopted a whippet puppy. Named him Inigo Montoya. Was looking forward to running with him.

and that was that.

2,105 followers. and poof.

what happened? where did she go? if she switched sites, I would think she would offer a forwarding address. did the whippet kill her? did she get hurt and give up the ghost? why would someone who was such a gifted and prolific blogger just stop in the middle of her adventure?

i guess that’s life on the Internet. but still. damn.

About The Runner

13 Things you (don’t really) need to know about the runner behind My Running Shorts:

  1. The runner strives to be, but is not quite a Zen.
  2. The runner is secretly a lazy chocolate-indulging TV-addict (who cancelled her cable subscription, on,y dot replace it with something far more dangerous – Netflix. She is especially happy when chocolate, TV, and running collide.
  3. The runner has approximately 17 pairs of ill-fitting running shoes in her extremely small urban-sized closet.
  4. The runner has a weakness for lame run slogan t-shirts (fast girls finish first!).
  5. The three words that best describe the runner are “on the side”.
  6. The runner has never consumed a cup of coffee or eaten a Big Mac, but has a weakness for animal cookies, which she cruelly eats head first.
  7. The runner’s marathons each have their own silly theme song. And sometimes a dance routine.
  8. The runner is all slow twitch and avoids race distances less than 21.1K in distance.
  9. The runner’s love affair with running is heartily enabled by her fast twitch Husband.
  10. The runner could maybe possibly go faster, but is too afraid of a flame-out to try.
  11. The runner used to be a mad scientist, but in the midst of a life crisis swapped the evil genius career for a new one. The one activity that maintained some degree of sanity (the Husband may disagree) during the transition was the long run.
  12. The runner does not usually refer to herself in the third person.  
  13. This runner loves lists that are 13 items long. And prime numbers. And palindromes. And palindromic primes. And now kind of wants to crop the list to 11.

Title: Big Yellow Taxi — Joni Mitchell

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cat yin/yang

yin: the cat jumps up on the bed and snuggles next to you on the comforter.

yang: four hours after you get out of bed, the cat is still in the same spot. the thing to remember is that Cats Don’t Care.


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seriously. NO recollection of what her record was.


after a week of avoiding the internet and the inevitable spoilers that lurk there, i finally watched the big movie last night. and all i can say is WOW!

you go into an event like that with high expectations, worried that the actual movie has no chance of living up to your expectations. but sometimes a cinematic experience is so great that it soars over the rainbow.

that’s right. i watched the wizard of oz. (what. did some OTHER movie open this weekend?)

the best thing about being old is that you forget stuff. computer passwords, russian classics, arantxa sanchez vicario’s doubles record. so even though i first saw the wizard of oz on a black and white tv (leaving me clueless about what the big deal was about arriving in oz), i was on the edge of my seat through the entire movie. mostly because we have a very small tv, and sitting on the edge of my seat allows me to see it.

i must admit i’ve always been annoyed by the title. the movie isn’t about the wizard of oz at all. it’s about (SPOILER ALERT) a girl and her search for her identity. the wizard doesn’t even show up till the waning moments of the movie, long after the time i’ve nodded off. if they had gone with something sexier like ATTACK OF THE FLYING MONKEYS, this movie could have been a timeless classic as opposed to the late-night filler it was destined to become.

Mostly it’s all about the star, of course. that voice. that timeless beauty. mickey rooney IS the perfect dorothy. i never cared much for michael jackson’s version of dorothy in the remake, although bubbles was the definitive flying monkey. i could watch rooney sing over the rainbow all day, or three minutes, whichever is shorter. and the inclusion of the grammy award-winning band toto was a huge plus, although they were unable to perform because of a huge song royalty dispute. but still.

trivia: the munchkins in the L. Frank Baum book were the same height as dorothy and wore exclusively blue clothing. i have no idea why they were changed to dwarves wearing technicolor costumes, unless the movie makers were aware that stoners several generations later would be syncing pink floyd’s dark side, and they wanted to give something for them to freak out about. one other point of trivia: dorothy in the book is 12 years old. judy garland in the movie was in her mid-40s and may or may not have been dead at the time. and yes, the entire book was in black and white.

bonus trivia: irene ryan, granny in the beverly hillbillies, was originally cast as the tinman, but was found to be allergic to the silver paint required for the costume. jack haley was then cast for the role. Haley was unable to perform rock around the clock because of a huge song royalty battle. they had a lot of huge song royalty dispute back in those days. of course that was before pandora did away with songwriting royalties altogether. 

mostly, of course, the movie is all about the flying monkeys. all these years later, they STILL scare the bejeebies out of me. i’m writing this more than 12 hours after viewing the cinema, and i still have NO bejeebies in me. freddie krueger has nothing on the monkeys. not to be confused with the monkees. although photos of the latter -years micky dolenz and peter tork still scare the bejeebies out of me.

and (SPOILER ALERT) although i was sad to see the cowardly lion killed toward the end of the movie in the epic battle (like he had a chance against a flying monkey with a light saber), i guess it’s all for the best, since he had lost interest and didn’t want to make any more sequels. coward.

all in all, the movie is a wonderful tale of coping with growing up told through the prism of a more innocent time.  “If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with!” a simple sentiment before the world became so damn big. of course, i don’t have a back yard. so i guess i’m screwed.

but the real magic of the movie is the quotes.  you forget how great the words are. Somewhere, over the rainbow, way up high, There’s a land that I heard of once in a lullaby. Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore. Ding Dong, the witch is dead,Which old witch?The wicked witch. As Coroner I must aver, I thoroughly examined her, and she’s not only merely dead, she’s really most sincerely dead. Lions, and tigers, and bears! Oh, my! How can you talk if you haven’t got a brain? I don’t know… But some people without brains do an awful lot of talking… don’t they? I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too! I’m melting! A heart is not judged by how much you love; but by how much you are loved by others. Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain. Back where I come from there are men who do nothing all day but good deeds. They are called phila… er, phila… er, yes, er, Good Deed Doers.  I think I’ll miss you most of all.  There’s no place like home.

it’s a pretty great movie. it’s not being shown in many theaters because of the huge hype over the Poehler/Fey movie that opened this weekend, but if you can find it in one of those little art movie joints that shows mostly french documentaries with eight-dollar espressos, it’s worth a viewing. but bring your ipod. you gotta sync up floyd.



ps: you can download the book for free on ibooks. because what could be better than pretentiously offering, “yeah, the movie was ok, but i thought the book was better.”



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it’s not easy being green

“Only WICKED witches are ugly.”

— Glenda, the Judgmental Witch of the North


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i finally got a cordless mouse at work

 having given up running forever, i was in desperate need of a new form of exercise. and i think i’ve stumbled upon it: STEP AEROBICS! It targets a different set of muscles than running, it is an effective way of going aerobic, and it’s something i can do at work without having to leave my desk.

ok, what actually happened: THERE WAS A HUGE FREAKING MOUSE IN THE LITTLE SPACE BETWEEN MY DESK AND THE WALL. I found this out when a co-worker said “hey do you know there’s a huge freaking mouse in the little space between your desk and the wall?” like i was harboring a fugitive or something.

obviously, my response was to jump on top of my desk and shriek like a little girl (as usual, i would like to apologize for unfair references to little girls, who obviously are much braver than me and will go on to become the world’s greatest soccer player only to kill her twitter and facebook immediately upon retirement).

i stayed up there for roughly an hour while a co-worker searched for him, trash can in hand to trap him. in my best Roy Scheider voice, i offered, “we’re going to need a bigger can.” this thing may have been a chihuaua.

i immediately alerted san angelo, the edition i was working on, that the deadline was in danger because one can’t really put out a paper while standing 5 feet above one’s screen. the night editor there did her intimidating cat impression over the speakerphone in an effort to scare him off (yes, it was a him. no polka dot skirt), but to no avail. whatever an avail is.

thus began a long night of glancing down occasionally, seeing the fearsome rodent, and jumping up on the desk again. i must say it’s a nice view from up there. and closer to the asbestos! by the end of the night, my quads were burning, which sounds like the start of a  ted cruz erotica novel but  …  (oh never mind i’m back to imagining ted cruz naked).

the best part: a co-worker had suggested that we get a copy desk cat to comfort us as our jobs ride off into the sunset. now we have a work-related reason! although gannett surely will lay it off in a year.

but as in any hallmark movie, the evening had a happy ending. eventually, in the journalistic version of Ratatouille, the mouse took over the page, handling the skybox cutouts (i guess it should be obvious that a mouse knows how to use a computer duh) and working a subtle ted cruz erotica reference into the congressional budget story.  and they lived happily ever after.

except for screaming like a little abby wambach. the end.




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