Friday, January 17, 2014

Brain Freeze....

Yes, that's the excuse I came up with for not posting in nearly 2 months.

Sure - I could have used the standard holiday season excuse; and while there would have been some truth to that, every single blog I follow has already exhausted that one. So, being late to the game, it was 'Brain Freeze'.

Specifically, every time I hovered my hands over the keyboard, I locked up. Actually that's not entirely true, I generally just got distracted by another shiny object and wandered away. Objects such as this one:

If you want to search out the video on YouTube, you can hear he's playing the theme to Star Wars on his bag pipes. If you have to ask me for the link, then you don't know how to use YouTube (or the Internet). I mean really, how many other videos do you think you'll turn up searching for Darth Vader + Unicycle + Kilt?

My obvious response to the logo "Keep Portland Weird" banner - mission accomplished.

While you're on YouTube, you can also search out the trailer for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. Better, yet - I will give you this one.

Judging by the comments, lots of people love this trailer. My response was 'meh'. It just didn't get me fired up. Maybe it's because I've just become numb to the over the top marketing in this country. Maybe it's that I don't really understand the need to create a sense of excitement and drama around bobsledding and skeleton. I mean, really? Have you watched that stuff? It's darn exciting in itself. Certainly more so that a bunch of athletes CGI'd to make the Olympics look like a winter version of  "The 300" (This is Sparta). Ho hum. Don't get me wrong, I'm outlandishly excited about the Olympics - but for me, the Olympic theme does it for me. I get goose bumps just listening to it.

Some interesting trivia I found on this theme (sorry, not fully weened off the shiny object distractions just yet):

Opening with what might be the most familiar drum beat of the last half century, “Bugler’s Dream” was composed by Léo Arnaud for a 1958 album called Charge!. It would have likely been consigned to the milk crate of history had not ABC Sports decided to use the track for its telecast of the 1968 winter games in Grenoble. Now often heard in a medley paired with Williams’ “Fanfare,” Arnaud’s music evokes a sense of pageantry and spectacle as great as the Games themselves.

Then of course are the countless political statements that everyone keeps making on fb. Yes, I get it. We are divided. We are resolute in our belief systems, and many of the more intellectually minded can even articulate valid reasons and factual data for their stances. I'll have a conversation about the dangers of fiat currency run amok any day of the week. But do we really need an unflattering picture of some political figure plastered with comments like "<insert name here> voted to impale kittens and set puppies on fire"? Is that really productive? Has someone.... anyone really ever, in the history of time, ever seen one of those zinger posts on fb on had their opinion changed? I don't think Mark Z. tracks that sort of thing (although the NSA might) - but I'll venture to guess a big fat 'no'. Anyway - I wish I had a 'stupid political one sided post' filter for my fb news stream. It's taking valuable time that I could be using perusing photos and videos of my friend's dinner, or their cat sleeping.

Do I sound like I'm in a bad mood? Well, you'd be wrong. I'm actually in an AWESOME mood and I'll tell you why.

Colorado has had a fabulous winter so far. It's snowing in the mountains and we've had some beautiful days in the city. And you know what that means - I can ride my bike and run outside. And as anyone that knows me would attest, I'm an outdoor cat.

I've also set my A races and officially started my training plan. That's fodder for another post (see how this works - its' like watching LOST - keeps drawing you to the next episode.

I will share this though. My key race this year will be Olympic Distance Age Group Nationals (which I qualified for last season). I've been crunching the numbers, and I have a shot at making Worlds and racing for Team USA. I have work to do to get there, but it's definitely within reach if I put in the time (and drop about 5 or 7 lbs). btw: How do you know you're at proper race weight? It's when you're mom worries about you, until she sees how much you eat :-)

Seriously though. I get goose bumps and choked up thinking about the possibility of wearing the Stars and Stripes and racing for my country. I love my country (and I'm not just saying that for the NSA trolls). But in a healthy way. In a way that I'm proud of the people I share this land with, regardless of our differences and I love the opportunities that I've been afforded growing up here. Yeah, we're not perfect - no country is... well... except for Sweden I think... but if countries saw themselves more as teams in competition to create the best lives possible for their citizens and a set of ideals and processes that could be shared openly for others to adopt in the world, well then I think nationalism has a place. Crowd source the good life.

Anywhooo.... that's my dream. That would be something. And I'm giving it a go in the next couple years - the World Championships part, not the fixing the world thing.

And now back to our regularly schedule program of sardonic wit, useless observations and intellectual porn.

Settle down. Not *Internet* porn, but *intellectual* porn, as in things that are entertaining but lacking in any practical value. Like this:

This is a teammates husband, posing with a lioness...
with some Indian bowls and a wood bathtub in the background.
I could call her up and ask what the story is - but I actually like not knowing.
I think the picture says it all.
Anyway, this is a multi-sport blog and I realize I haven't done that much chatting about sports, training and the like - but consider this a commercial break. I've got a ton of ideas queued up for near future posts, but for now - just sit back and enjoy the ride. I'm almost done being nonsensical.

Now, the New Year has passed (here in the US, soon in China). And although I don't do New Year's resolutions (life is short - don't wait for the start of the year), the time off from work and spending time with family allows me a bit of introspection bandwidth.

The following are things that I've been working on over the past year and are things I want to continue doing in the coming year:

1. Allow all frustration to live only within the intellectual domain, not the emotional domain. Because the emotional response to frustration doesn't really ever help.

2. Continue to move towards a metabolically efficient diet and training.

3. Schedule time to learn stuff.

4. Finish off all the Bond (Ian Fleming) and Sherlock Holmes novels.

5. Watch even less TV than last year. I think in the last 2 weeks I've watched a total of like an hour of TV.

6. Snowboard more.

7. Ignore idiots completely. This falls perfectly in line with my 'best practice' of what I like to call "DB Free Friday" - simply put, one of the perks of my job is that barring an emergency, I have the ability to simply avoid accepting meeting invites or answering phone calls from anyone I personally consider to be a feminine hygiene product on the last day of the work week. It's remarkably liberating and sets me up for a happy weekend. The other thing I worked on was engaging on any conversation that started with a moronic socio-political statement or premise. I've just realized the futility in it and that the catch phrase, "start the conversation" is really code for "dog pile on to my side of the argument or go get buggered"

That's it for tonight. And with that, I'll leave you with a picture that's worth a thousand words - re-posted by a good friend and caused me to espouse my massive parental wisdom on the fb community:

My response?

To spot the landing for him of course.

Go big or go home.

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