Wednesday, November 30, 2011

(title to be determined) (title still not determined)

This is going to be a whole post. Just not right now, because I have to go put my running stuff on and then go running in my running stuff. Check back tomorrowish.

But you can watch this now. You know you want to.

Edited Later As Promised:

So, I love this song. I've always loved this song. But I couldn't figure out who sang it. I googled the lyrics - what lyrics I could remember - every few months, but the internet seemed to think it didn't exist.

Then today I remembered I had a friend who was basically Wikipedia's entire discography database in the shape of a human brain. So I sent him a text. It said:
"'...Gloria / I think they've got your number / I think they've got the alias / you've been living under...' who is that"

And he texts me back in about 5 seconds, "That is Gloria by Laura Branigan, from the summer of 1982."

It pays to choose your friends well.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

If I was this good at math, I would be a millionaire.

I finally did it.

I finally came up with the reason Emma Frost betrays us all and hooks up with the universally hated Scott Summers, despite it being totally against her character and disgusting.

Emma Frost and Jean Grey have a central thing in common. They both have hosted the Phoenix Force. This would necessarily have profound effects on their physical brains.

That Asshat Scott merged with the entity of Apocalypse. I didn't pay much attention to this as I spend most of my time pretending that they killed him off ages ago. BUT it serves my theory well because it is this: the Phoenix Force broke Emma's brain.

Well, I'm thinking there's a magnetic polarity thing occurring wherein Emma's brain points towards Scott's brain, so it's not actually HER deciding to hook up with Scott, but rather an instinctive alignment towards the only other body that has experienced the same kind of physical possession.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Shake it out.

This whole thing can be replaced with an elaborate analogy with the song "Shake It Out" by Florence + the Machine, because that's how I'm rolling today. I want to reassure everyone that this is the only time I'm going to mention this, and then I'm done, and I'm going to begin the process of turning into me again.

I haven't been. Maybe it wasn't noticeable - I was certainly trying to mask it - but it's the truth. I didn't deal with myself because I didn't want to, so I laserlocked onto the marathon and told myself it was just because I was a Dedicated Athlete Who Wanted To Accomplish Things.

That's true, but I let it become nearly all I was. I haven't been fun for a while. These past couple of weeks have been hard because the marathon was gone, and I should have been really, really happy and pleased with myself, and instead I felt like a deflated balloon.

I reread some of the older entries on here, and I found myself thinking that it would be really cool to be this person's friend. I think I'm still that person in here, and I'm going to start poking around to see where she's - where I'M - hiding. And then I'll be my friend again, and take myself out for Vietnamese food, and come back from runs with my head full of things I can't wait to tell myself.

And now for something completely different.

Happy Birthday to DiNovia, whose box of presents (yes, plural) has been sitting on my desk for at least two months, while I was busy not sending it. I'm really quite a bad long distance friend. I love her extremely very much and generally think I don't deserve her.

If you ever wish to read some excellent femslash - or if you already read femslash but live under a very sad, unsexy rock - you should settle down with a DiNovia or two or all of them. And then send her letters begging for more stories. Moremoremoremore. Mentioning that I sent you won't get you anything, but it will make me feel like more of a contributor to the femslash universe than my three low-volume oneshots. Two if you don't count the Pippi Longstocking.

Oh, shut up.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Very Zombie Race Recap: Richmond

So, I'm having the most awkward conversation on an internet dating site (which will remain nameless so the internet doesn't find me... on the internet...) and watching Bridesmaids, which is already on my favorite movies list even though I haven't finished it, and I figured I would finally recap the race day.

So, my parents drove me to the start, and mercifully we didn't get lost for once.

It was really cold and we were early enough to watch the start of the half marathon, which meant that I had half an hour of standing around regretting my decision to wear shorts and a t-shirt with only a hat and gloves as a nod to the cold. I had a zip-up hoodie on but it was cotton and I was planning on ditching it. I was torn between moving around to warm up, or conserving energy for the marathon.

Luckily, I was so busy thinking about how cold I was that I wasn't thinking about the race.

When they started getting people in the corrals, I shucked out of my hoodie and shoved it at my parents. I'm sure they wished me luck or something. There was a guy holding up a big sign that said 4:00 and I made a beeline for it.

I talked to the people around me with about half of my brain. All of them had run marathons before so there was that. The guy running the pace group had run 53 of them and he was all, "Yeah, I basically just do this now. I ran a 3:03 last year and now I just take it easy."

I was like, "Yeah, ok. Easy."

So then they started the race and we all shuffled across the start line and finally were running.

The pace group was running straight 9:09min/miles the whole time. It felt really slow because I was cold and antsy, but I was determined to stay with them for at least the first five miles. I made it about three before I really couldn't do it anymore and stopped holding myself back. I just... ran. I tried to just stay comfortable and it worked.

I was feeling really good for the first fifteen, like there was absolutely nothing wrong and I could run forever. I did a Gu at mile 6 when I stopped to use a portajohn. The UltraMarathoner kept ninja-ing all over the course and cheering for me, and it was a nice distraction.

I had permission to kick it up a notch in the second half 'if I felt like it,' and I felt like it, so I did. Mile 15, right before The Bridge, was when I was told to start looking for McDad and The One With No Feelings. So I came around this switch-back corner and didn't see them, and then I saw them walking along the bridge looking for me.

The Bridge was not as awful as advertised at all. My parents were waiting on the other side of it and my mom did her little dance of happiness that I love so much, the one when she's so excited she can't stand it.

And then My Boys and I were off to the races. We passed what seemed like everyone running the course. At mile - I don't know, maybe 17? - The Librarian, The Triathlete and The Mathy Guy screamed at me. I didn't know they were going to be there so that was cool, except I didn't move over to get my high fives because my brain was still going, "Hey, I think maybe I know those people, and that might be my name they're screaming." So the Triathlete and The Mathy Guy actually sprinted to catch up with me, which was really cool considering that they had just run the half marathon really, really fast and were probably hurting really bad.

I did another Gu at mile 18. I was beginning to get concerned about the fact that I since I couldn't get much water at each of the stops - the water was getting more on the outside the inside - I was drinking at more of the stops, and my stomach hadn't had a chance to settle.

Up to mile 23, 24, everything was cool. And then, well... at around mile 24, I turned to The One With No Feelings and informed him, quite casually, that I had just thrown up in my mouth.

I don't think he knew what to do with that information.

Both of them just kept telling me how hard I was rocking this marathon, and to just keep going, and I'm really, really glad they were there, because mile 25 was when I started thinking, "What does it matter? What does it really matter?"

I was so nauseous the last mile that that was basically all I was thinking about. Not throwing up. If I threw up in the last mile, that would take time, and at that point I needed to just be done.

At the end of mile 26, there's a big, long downhill that goes into the chute, and the Boys basically kicked me down it before ducking off the course (they couldn't finish with me or they would be arrested or something). I stretched my legs out and just let go, and it felt... actually good. It was steep enough that I could just fly down it.

I was briefly surprised that no one else seemed to have the same response to the hill. I shot past at least a dozen people. I came around a slight curve and looked straight into my dad's eyes. He grinned really big and gave me two thumbs up, shouting, "All right!" Just super proud of himself for finding a good spot to see me.

I crossed the finish line with that smile on my face, and I thought the clock said 3:56 (it turns out my time was 3:50:57, but I didn't find that out for at least half an hour). I spent about two seconds totally celebrating while my medal was dropped over my head and I wrapped a space blanket around my shoulders, and then I remembered I felt like I might die. I kept walking until I got out of the finishers' area and then just stood there thinking, "Uh..."

That's what this expression is.

My mom ran up and hugged me and while I appreciated that, I also needed her to stop touching me. I actually needed my body just to not be there. I really felt lousy and half-dead.

It turns out The One With Manners and The Superhuman were there, and everyone else was there, and everyone was all, "How do you feel?" and I was all, "OMG please no one look at me when I throw up."

The Librarian was like, "Dude, just throw up," but there was nowhere to do it.

So we walked down the street a little bit and my dad ducked into a cafe and got me a Reed's Ginger Beer. And I sat down on the cold flagstones outside the cafe and drank my ginger ale and thought to myself about how it was a good thing I had finished a marathon, because I was going to die and it was nice to have that crossed off the list first.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Race Recap Part 1: Friday

So, I did it.

I ran my first marathon.

I've been trying to put my thoughts in order about this since about an hour afterwards (when I started to feel human again) and I still don't know what to think about it.

How about a recap while I keep thinking about it?

We'll start with Friday.

I had already gotten permission from my archaeology professor to skip class - actually what she said was, "Have you ever been absent? Cause you can be, three times." - so my parents and I left Greensboro about the time I would have been leaving for class.

We left this early so we could go to Mama Dip's in Chapel Hill for lunch. I ate sweet potato biscuits, fried green tomatoes, cornbread, cabbage, turnip greens, and pecan pie. And it was all delicious. Well, the pecan pie could have been darker and made of more pie crust but then that's my criticism of most pies that other people find quite nice, so probably that's more of a 'me' thing and less of a 'pie' thing.

So then we drove to Richmond and checked into the hotel, but didn't actually go into our hotel rooms because we needed to make it to the expo for packet pick-up and then to dinner.

Packet pick-up at the expo... well, I didn't know my number, so I went over to number look-up and the lady was all, "Yeah, you're number 706."

And I was like, "Wait, surely you mean 12706 or 14706?"

And she said, "No, 706. Go get your number over there and let the next person in line go."

So I went over to where she said and said, "Hi, they said 706 and here's my ID but -"

And they said, "Oh! You're in corral 1. Here."

And I said, "No no no. I'm not in corral 1. I said my goal time was 3:50. That's not -"

And THEN they said, "Oh, well. That sounds about right." (The actual corral 1 cut-off time was 3:45, so I dunno what they were talking about.)

So I freaked out for a little while, and was oddly embarrassed about the number and the big letters that said 'Corral 1' under it. But then it was time to put pasta and rice krispies treats in my face and sit around watching the basketball game that they were playing on the ocean.

During half time, we all looked at the maps so my parents could figure out where to stand to see me, and somehow right in the middle of it, it hit me: Miles. There were 26 of them. More than 26 of them.

And though everyone was quick to reassure me that I'd be fine, that I'd trained hard for this, that I was prepared... I was deep enough into my internal panic attack that I figured they were just lying to me so I wouldn't be so nervous.

After we got back to the hotel, I stacked all of my clothes and supplies on a chair and went to bed, convinced I would not be able to sleep at all. I did eventually fall asleep, but I had a dream where I was running a marathon, and even though I thought I was running good, I was the slowest one and was still running when it was getting dark. I got lost on the course because a guy had had time to build a house in the middle of it before I got there, and I had to figure out how to run through it.

I woke up at 6 and by that point just wanted to get running so all of this nervous shit would go away.

Monday, November 7, 2011

The Kato's Mad Tarantella

5 days until Richmond.

Just so you're fully aware of what's happening in my brain. It's just that, over and over, a little party of panic being thrown by my neurons. With screams and hyper-active pillow fights and about half of them demanding Cheetos at the top of their lungs. My brain is made of nine year old girls at a slumber party right now.

I think probably I'm ready. But I'm not being overconfident and saying I'm ready, because then it'll turn out I'm not ready and I said I was ready and... Nine year old girls. Up till two AM and high on nail polish fumes. Seriously.

So this week is taper, which is a whole new layer of hell added to the mix, like maybe somehow the nine year olds got ahold of a metric ton of pixie sticks. Because what I do when I'm stressed is run. And I can't run very much, so I'm just gonna stay at this heightened level of stress until whoosh it's all gone.

I have a somewhat plan for dealing with this. I know I'll be judged for it, and I'm judging myself, but my plan is to eat cereal and play World of Warcraft. Yes, eat cereal. I know. I'll quit again after the marathon, but for now... The nine year olds want Cheetos.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Queen's Mad Tarantella

^ is the name of something in my future. Possibly a band, or a book, or I don't even know what. But it's awesome, and it's mine. I call dibs.

Tonight I'm going to run the course for the Greensboro XC League's first race on Saturday, which I will not be able to run because it's a patently stupid idea to race a 5k the week before a marathon. Running 5k distance, no problem - shattering my legs (or trying to) in order to get a good time, problem. And I don't need to hear your "Well, maybe go run the race just to get a finish in." That won't work. It's been demonstrated to me that I have no sense. I'm going to enjoy a nice, long leg-stretch run from Tex n Shirley's Pancake House, followed by some corn pancakes.

But I'm gonna go run the course today with The Librarian and The Mechaniker and whoever else in the league decides to show up, and then we're gonna figure out why my car is unhappy, besides the fact that she's a bitter old woman with a history of manic depression. Tomorrow I'm going to write some term papers and such.

And now I have to go, because I've just remembered that I promised to loan my hockey helmet to a girl on the Orange Crush, and I'm actually at home now and can go and get it. If I don't jump on this, then I actually will forget it, despite reminding myself (and being reminded) like eighty thousand times.