30 November 2007

oh well.

first off, if you don't have the nfl network, don't feel too bad. bryant gumble is a mess at play by play. the pregame show was a joke, with neon deion sanders acting like a total dallas homer. for an entity that is so concerned with identity, this production is laughable.

second, the packers did alright, all things considered. al harris, contrary to the hype, is not a lock-down cover corner. if you make it past his initial jam at the line, he is mostly useless down the field (unless he gets a lucky break on the ball). he looked like a deer in headlights most of the night.

third, why would the nfl give a first year head ref the biggest regular season game of the nfc? 3 major blown calls in dallas' favor (one was overturned after coach's review). they still would have lost, but come on.

oh well, for how poorly they played on defense, the packers still made it interesting. dallas is beatable with more pressue on the qb and better downfield coverage.

couple more pages to write for my paper. then, it's 10 minutes (or so) of presentation slides. snow in the forcast for the weekend will interfere with my plans to put up lights. hopefully it's enough for a brotha to snowshoe or at least ski.

happy friday.

29 November 2007

polar precision and vista.

anybody know how to make polar precision performance software work on microsoft vista? once this school thing is on sabbatical for a few weeks, i'd like to get it up and running on my laptop. i'm sure i could look it up on the polar site but who has the time for that?

i'm up to 21-ish pages on my paper. the key to my production today was getting away from free wifi (the library's was down). however, i need it for the last few pages so here i am. i will be done with this (minus the conclusion) prior to tonight's mega tilt involving the packers. anyway, my last minute decision to take a day off from work to work on school is paying off. hmmm, a day off to work...sounds really....nerdy? then again, my title is senior scientist so everyone knew that already.

happy thursday (go-pack-go).

28 November 2007

the brewers.

today's velonews site of the day is pretty cool (click here). i can vouch that copenhagen is a cyclists' town (as can my dk readers).

it's been awhile since i've commented on the good old brewers. a lot has happened so far this offseason, with estrada getting shipped out east, signing kendall and losing coredero and linebrink. emotionally, i was against moving estrada because i kind of liked the guy. but his defense was bad. really bad. and so was his on base percentage. kendall is better in obp, but is pretty bad on d (but he calls a good game). so, they got slightly better on offense. plus, i've been a jason kendall fan since his days in pittsburg. losing cordero to a rival hurts, but he got rediculous money to go to an even bigger hitters park than miller park. plus, doug melvin has said they are spending the money they offered him on other players...which is exciting. and, i'm all for turnbow getting another opportunity to close. when he is bad, he is really bad (that is what people ususually remember). but, he when he is on he is lights out. mike maddux has gotten it out of him consistently in the past, so why not give it another try.

there, i feel better now. up until 11:30 last night working. then i lost my muse and had to call it a night. i was laying in bed awake until at least 12:30 thinking about everything else i need to do. i'll be really happy when this is all done.

happy wednesday.

27 November 2007

i don't know where i am...

so someone has visited this site from south africa...or mozambique, i can't tell by looking at the map. blogs are weird. anyway, welcome!

the group written project is in. i submitted my peer assessment comments as well. i tried to take the high road while still making it known that it could have gone a lot better. i hope i didn't say too much, but they insisted on being candid.

i ran last night. headlamp and airdale terrier in tow. he loved all 30 minutes of it, and i have to say, i did too. finished it with some sit ups, push ups and stretching and i don't even feel that sore this morning (except my knees of course).

happy tuesday.

26 November 2007

back at it.

well, to say my weekend was unproductive would be an understatement. relative to the time investment, the output was dissappointing to say the least. oh well.

i'm about half done with my paper...i was hoping to be all done. all nights this week will be spent working towards the completion of this (except perhaps thursday night - no reason)...and some late nights may be required to ensure i'm done so i can prepare for my two presentations.

hopefully work doesn't 'get in the way.'

i spent some time looking at my bikes and thinking about running. but never made it out the door. hmmm, what to say about that?

maybe tonight? maybe.

happy monday.

25 November 2007

call it, friend-o

went and saw 'no country for old men' last night with mark and lisa. great flick, not the kind you would bring your 10 year old to (there were a couple in the theater), but a great movie. like all cohen brothers films, the casting was great. a must see. 9/10. it's amazing that these same guys can make a movie like the big lebowski.

this aggression will not stand, man.

anyway, it was really nice to have an adult evening with great company.

round two of paper writing today. hopefully it gets better. as soon as i get bogged down this morning, i'm going for a run...that is...if i remember how.

happy sunday.

24 November 2007

writer's block.

hmmm, to say i have writer's block would be to imply that i am a writer. that seems like a stretch to me. especially considering my performance this afternoon.

the problem is, i get all these ideas. ideas that i like...and i cannot get them all down. i get bogged down on 1 idea, and i lose the rest. then i get frustrated.

so far, i've written about 1 page/hour. not fast enough...i don't have 20 more hours for this paper.

i'm going to go home and tinker with my bikes.

happy saturday.

23 November 2007

LB's

man, i love thanksgiving. the food, the football, the food. however, i have been over indulging a lot lately, and i think it is starting to show. out of breath throwing the football, a few pounds heavier on the uber-accurate scale of the in-laws. you know, the tell tale signs of an extended period of down time. a couple more weeks and then my schedule opens up...a little.

speaking of a little...only a little drama over the holiday but everyone took it in stride. also, i was reminded that gun-deer hunting is not my cup of tea. more power to the willing souls that do it, but there is no way i would want to put myself in the crossfire that exists out in the fields and country side of northern wisconsin.

back to work.

happy friday.

21 November 2007

stem cells.

today two separate groups published the derivation of human, non-embryonic stem cells for the first time. one group was jamie thompson's out of the university of wisconsin-madison (the first lab to also isolate embryonic stem cells). this should assure dr. thompson a nobel prize.

this is a landmark day in the biotechnology field and is why i'm in this program at this point in time at this institution. madison has become a hot bed for biotechnology, partly because of a very pro-active university (with very talented scientists), partly because the city and state governments doing a good job of identifying the potential madison has in the field and nuturing it with cash, and partly other reasons (like a federal district court nationally known for pushing patent cases through in a short amount of time). i'm happy to be a part of it.

coincidentally, my 20-25 page paper is on embryonic stem cell ethics and regulation. i guess sometimes it is good to procrastinate, because a lot of what i was going to write about just, sort of, became obsolete.

happy thanksgiving everyone.

it just couldn't go well.

it looks like i'll be coming into work on friday/saturday for a spell. for just how long will be determined by my troubleshooting skills today. gas chromatography is for suckas (on a holiday week that is).

my delinquent group member has finally posted her portion of the paper due monday. i'm not impressed with her work, but at least there is something in writing. she emailed a plethora of questions that show 1) she literally started thinking about this last weekend 2) she has not paid any attention in class thus far and 3) she hasn't really READ her sources (or rather, the sources she 'borrowed' from her teammates (namely, me). whatever, each section is graded independantly, and i think the group leader's grade is dependant on how well the sections flow so i need to let it go...i've got bigger fish to fry.

on a brighter note, my favorite holiday of the year is tomorrow. i can almost smell the grilled turkey breast at my in-laws. and a packer game to boot! hopefully oliver doesn't find a way to ruin thanksgiving...with that much food around i'm a little worried.

happy wednesday.

20 November 2007

it's the national championship again...

24 hours of 9-mile

when your work speaks for itself...don't interrupt.

that quote is on the soulcraft homepage...and i like it. that really sums up my approach at work, and i wish my colleagues lived by the same mantra. oh well.

i turned in my last lab notebook write up of the semester. nice. i made my powerpoint slides for the laboratory presentation for that class as well. real nice. so, 1 very productive night. i may have a new favorite study spot...the sundance theatre at hilldale mall. they've got peet's, the play jazz, they have wi-fi, and it is quiet without being too quiet.

actually, that reminds me. when i arrived, there were two women sitting at the table next to me. i think one was some sort of a life coach, because she was explaining to the other what she NEEDED in her purse and what she didn't. she also kept saying, "well, when we go shopping we'll be able to figure that out." and she kept taking notes. it was kind of weird.

anyway, time to get to work.

happy tuesday.

19 November 2007

and down the stretch they come!

well, this is it. the next several weeks are going to be the crux of the semester in terms of pulling everything together to complete the term. this will be tough, because i'm starting to daydream about all the time i will have once the semester is complete (even though it is not necessarily true). i feel like i've done a pretty good job of keeping my head in the game all the way through (unlike undergrad) and now is not the time to let my work drift in terms of quality.

anyway, thanks (to the 3 or 4 readers) for putting up with my school obsession the past 3 months or so.

happy monday.

18 November 2007

the semi-frozen tundra.



today was a good day.

14 November 2007

and then there was this.

so, the thing is...i've missed it. i've missed the feel of the trail. i've missed the vibe at *some* of the races. mostly, i've missed my buddies. you know, the life of the long distance runner is a solitary one, and while my latest attempt at the marathon reaffirmed my love for the sport of 1 foot in front of the other, i cannot completely turn my back on the bicycle.

since my break started post-marathon, i've had little to no time to do much in the way of training. this is by far the longest break i've had in years, and what i think about doing, what i really long to do, is ride my bikes. my attempts at training plans haven't panned out over the years. i write them in november/december(overly ambitious training plans). i follow them religiously for about 1/2 of the duration. i start losing my interest in said training plan. training becomes an arduous task. racing returns begin to dimish. i get frustrated and decide it's the sport and i need to change. silly, i know. so, here i am, writing this years training plan. it's a blank piece of paper. i'm calling it "the no-nonsense, no specifics, lots of fun, ride/run when you can" training plan.

balance will be the goal. i'm going to take advantage of my busy schedule in 2008 and just do what i can fit in. no training plan. no 'A' races. just me, my running shoes and my bike(s). here is to the fit life. here is to racing when time permits. here is having fun again.

class weekend starts tonight. this is the last 'normal' session of the semester. the last one is reserved for two presentations and submission of a paper. the end is in sight, and the next three weeks will be the crux of this climb.

happy thursday.

a step back in quality.

another dandy day yesterday. stressful at work (although, my nemesis put in her notice...which made my morning), stessful at home, and then homework until almost 11:30. in keeping with the current holiday advertising blitz, family plans for christmas have been a source of stress. it has a little to do with the monopolizing of our weekends off from school between holidays and wedding stuff. come on, throw us a bone. 6hours of driving/weekend in potential winter weather isn't my idea of a winter break, not to mention the fact that i've gotten little to *no* quality time with my wife since, oh, the semester started...but i digress.

i wish i could run/ride a bike/sleep. but, i need to work. work work. school work.

happy wednesday.

13 November 2007

the thing is.

i'm feeling a little soft around the edges. i guess that is what happens when you don't do any physical activity. it's amazing how fast one goes from fine tuned to not so fine tuned in a month or so. oh well, it isn't for nothing...i'll have a degree in 2009. it is hard to remember that sometimes.

it's only novemeber. the problem is...i fear i'll be saying this stuff in april as well. plenty of time to get in shape for some late summer/early fall racing of some sort.

anyway, this post is like seinfeld...a post about nothing.

happy tuesday.

12 November 2007

interesting.

i meant to do this earlier, but i forgot.

last week, the tampa bay devil rays announced they are truncating their official name to the 'rays' in an attempt to rebrand. with that, they are changing their colors/uniform designs as well.

the new look:




it reminds me of something...hmmm, what could it be. oh yea, the mariners:



and the padres...



and the brewers too!




i know, i know...they are all subtly different. but, if you are branding a team, wouldn't you want it to stand out (this applies to all examples above)?

not much to report. i wish i could go for a run right now, it is a beautiful morning. i finalized 3 writing assignments last night, so i feel pretty good about that. still a lot to do, but i'm making some ground.

happy monday.

11 November 2007

break time.

a little break from my studies.

the 1st semi-annual soup party was this weekend. fun was had...and i resisted the urge to drink any of the tasty brews that were circulating. if you didn't get an invite to this one, don't feel slighted. we are hoping to do these every couple months through the cold months...and our house is only so big.

i managed to log an hour of mtb-ing at blackhawk as well (with ron). i've had this thought for a while now, but keep this in mind...anyone want to race 24 hours of 9-mile with me? i think i can talk ron into it...so that leaves room for two. think about it.

back to work. packers win...check. badgers win...check.

happy sunday.

09 November 2007

see you sometime.

i got out for 35 minutes of trail running last night (headlamp in tow). i forget just how much i like 1) unstructured training and 2) running at night. on top of that, there is a new section of the ice age trail connecting the other sections i run on that starts 3 minutes from our house...sweet. that means, from the house, i can run for 60 minutes on trail (120 round trip) with only a few pavement crossings. i followed that up with 10 minutes of core work and foam roller work. i need to fix my knees, and i definitely found some 'hot spots' at the insertion of the quadraceps tendon above the knee.

i've also got the bike room set up for winter training and/or tinkering. it really is nice to have a little space to 'play.' now i just need to get the vcr hooked up to the television so i can watch my old tour de france tapes. while professional cycling is a joke, 'the look' is still a very motivating moment...

i also made a little more progress on my group paper last night. i'm close to calling it good, my goal is to have both sections finalized sunday night. that will be a relief to get those 10-12 single spaced pages off of my desk (and on to the 20-30 page monster that is awaiting my keyboard).

happy friday.

08 November 2007

no seats and bad gas.

that sums up our uwec alumni event last night. the badger men's basketball team were playing an exhibition against the blugolds and we received an invite for a alumni social gathering that would include 'seats' for the game (by invite i mean $35/ticket). when we got the 'tickets' they had seat numbers on them. but, when we arrived there were no seats. so we stood and watched from behind the seats that were available (taken by the bus group that came from eau claire-first come first served)...which is where the bad gas came into the picture...and i'm not going into further detail on that one.

the thing is, we spent $70 dollars thinking we had seats, there would be some food, we'd get a chance to see the men play (which is a tough ticket these days) and it would be a change of pace from what we normally do on our periodic 'date nights.' we don't have a lot of extra money these days, mostly because of me, and so bang for the buck is what we are looking for. we didn't get that last night. i am dissappointed with our alma mater.

that being said, i had a very enjoyable evening with my wife. instead of being mad and having a bad evening, we giggled at the silliness of the events and laughed at each other. we talked more than watched the game, which right now, is a luxury we don't have very often (that is, having a conversation for more than 10 minutes at a time). was it worth $70? probably not...but i wouldn't trade the time we had together for $70.

this morning, i allowed myself a luxury that i have been trying to skip during the week, that being starbucks. i pulled into the shopping center where it is, and was surprised to see the giant christmas tree in its annual locale. as i entered starbucks, i was shocked again to see the christmas goods in full effect, and the bold coffee choice was the christmas blend. just another example of retail america sucking that last bit of enjoyment out of the holiday. i mean, by the time christmas arrives, most people are just glad it is over with. and i find that sad. i wish it could go back to starting after thanksgiving, but i think we have a better chance of it starting in september then we do at going back to how it used to be.

work has been bothering me lately as well. maybe all this stress and work is finally taking its toll. it just seems that the harder i work, the less i get done...mostly because of my colleagues. the problem is, we hire like crazy. most new hires are fresh graduates. we are in different places. while i'm starved for a professional atmosphere and professional development, the newbies are just content working at a place where you can wear jeans and a t-shirt. that is like saying the reason you live in the usa is that in most places you can make a right hand turn on a red light (annie hall reference). i cannot blame them, i was there once. but it is becoming more and more apparent that i will not find the professional fulfillment i crave in my current work atmosphere, regardless of how much i like my bosses (which has been the single redeeming characteristic thus far). the problem is, right now i really don't have the time to invest in a job search, nor are we in a financial place to do a job switch (which usually involves a few months of reduced income). so, it's time to try and draw from the positives. and i guess, just stop bitching.

happy thursday.

07 November 2007

how is it?

since my daily blog time (and occasional other times throughout my work day) are really my only times to think about training anymore, i'm going to pose this question to my fellow runners and/or riders: how does one train to run and bike fast? the 4 duathlons i'm getting excited about are run-bike-run format, most are around 5km for runs and 20 miles biking (i dig the mixed metric/imperial distances). there is one bike leg that is 32 miles (sandwiched between 3mi and 1mi runs). anyone have any clue?

not that i have any time to train or anything, but the fact that it doesn't seem totally repulsive to me is a step in the right direction. and even if i had time, i'm on the 'physically unable to perform' list. i can run a marathon, but 3 hours of yardwork rendered me hobbled. weird.

robin and i are going to watch the badgers pummel the uwec blugolds (mens b-ball). it's an alumni event...hopefully they only ask once for money.

happy wednesday.

06 November 2007

company in my back.

well, unfortunately the woman robin helped on friday night passed away. the silver lining is that she was a organ donor. the story seems to have been picked up by several regional news outlets, i guess people in wisconsin take note when a deer/car collision proves fatal. i guess this could be a case for a larger car, or at least one that is a little taller on the road.

i made some really nice headway on my homework last night. i guess some times you feel like a nut, and some times you don't. i wish i felt like a nut more often, but so it goes.

during the course of my weekend i somehow pulled my groin. i can barely walk, which has thwarted any plans i had to start running or riding on an every other day basis. oh well, i'm actually enjoying this downtime and i'm not having any trouble staying sedentary. that will change eventually.

it's cold out. i kind of like it...for now anyway.

happy tuesday.

05 November 2007

at least that's what you said.

trouble on the group front has gotten me down a little. our 'group leader' for the big semester end project will be on vacation for 10 or so days prior to the written part of the project's deadline. how convenient for her. compounded by the fact that crappy group member #2 probably won't have her part done until thanksgiving means that i will have some extra work to do on this project...that is, if i want it to turn out ok. what is the fucking point of group work? to learn that 50-75% of people don't really give a hoot?

when i started school, specifically a program that recruits professionals that have been working for some time, i expected a level of maturity that would make the school experience different. what i've learned is that most people just revert to undergraduate tendencies and screw the others over. humans suck.

i saw a story last night on 60 minutes about elephant poaching. fields of dead animals for $500 worth of ivory. the rest of the animal rots. but the chinese need their ivory chopsticks.

i'm in a foul mood.

happy monday.

04 November 2007

when you least expect it.

yesterday, during the us olympic marathon trials in nyc, ryan shay (a former us champion) collapsed and died at mile 5.5. the cause of death is unknown.

i can't imagine the emotions his fellow runners are feeling, especially the 3 that qualified. 'hey, you just accomplished your life's dream, you qualified for the olympics. and by the way, one of your friends and training partners died.'

i guess it is the old cliche, he died doing what he loved to do. it is a sad day in us distance running.

03 November 2007

my hero.

last night, on the way to her sister's wedding shower, robin (and other sister betsy) were the first on the scene of an accident just outside of madison. a car had hit a deer, the deer when through the windshield (and through the driver) and ended up in the backseat (the deer was decapitated). while betsy called for help, robin proceeded to help the unconcious lady breath (she was breathing but very gurgley). she also had the calmness and state of mind to put the car in park and later to help the emt's stabilize the patient until med-flight was able to take the victim to uw-hosptial.

now, i'm not doing this story justice (there are some details i left out). all i know is that not only do i love my wife very much, but she is also my hero. she amazes me consistently, not by what she accomplishes, but how she does it...with calmness and intelligence.

on a lighter note, i was planning to be riding right now. but the badgers on on the cusp of beating the mighty buckeyes. go badgers!!

**update**
by 'cusp' i should have said 'in a 3 quarter game, the badgers could almost beat the buckeyes.' oh well, i'm going biking.

01 November 2007

randomness before the storm

man, twin six makes some sweet stuff. i especially like the socks (but the jersey designs are a close second). and a minneapolis company to boot.

i've mentioned lately that i've had bike on the mind. i'm going to try to ride it out this weekend with a road ride on saturday after class and a atb ride with ron. he, scott and the curtes boys are doing a 100mi+ ride saturday. hopefully that takes a little out of ron's legs so i can keep up (i've ridden a bike 4 or 5 times this year, and i haven't been doing much of anything since the marathon). should be just what the doctor ordered.

in between all that i've got around 30 pages of text to write, so hopefully i can stay on task.

and now i need to get my work done.

happy thursday.