Category: Miscellanea


Running for charity.

This was last year. I signed up to do this again, I raised more money but took longer to finish the run. I am kind of disappointed in that, but I still finished. 2014 my time was 52 minutes 12 seconds.

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Perfection

Is not attainable in its true sense. But what about relative perfection? Sunday I had to go to Brooklyn, after telling myself over and over again that I needed to leave earlier than I left Saturday, I ended up leaving later. Then when I got to Lexington and 59th I waited for the Q train, and waited and waited. I saw a girl going to the same event I was going to and we started talking about “No Q train” trying to figure out another way to get there and she said, “It always happens on the day you need everything to be perfect.” Perfect for us at that moment was making all our train connections smoothly, at the proper station and without waiting. We made it to Brooklyn, but we were late.

Today was another special event I planned to go to. For this event I didn’t have to go to Brooklyn, but I had to dress up pretty, do my hair and makeup and hopefully not be sick feeling. I woke up with cramps I thought they were stomach cramps from my soup the night before and thought maybe I was developing an allergy to black beans. One of my great-nieces is allergic to black beans. As I was getting ready for work I realized they weren’t stomach cramps and I wasn’t going to be feeling well for the special event in the evening. Then when I came home from work early so I could ready, I was going to iron my dress and make dinner, instead I sat down on the couch and fell asleep. I barely had time to take a bath and get dressed. Fortunately my friends are not critical. But I was not happy.

Perfection, not attainable in any form.

Then there was

On the subway, a lady with ash blond hair with dark roots wearing a headband with gold roses on it. She looked like she could have been the high priestess of some obscure religion. Or just making a fashion statement, like, “I’ll wear roses in my hair if I want too. Nobody can stop me.” Then she got off off at 77th St. I must find out if any out of the box religions have a temple or something there.

It’s very possible I was drunk when I made the above observations. At least that’s what I wrote on the page after that.

As I was sitting at one of my local bars enjoying my mac-n-cheese, 2 men came in and stood next to me at the end of bar and ordered drinks. The bartender serves them, takes their money. The owner/manager comes up to the bar, sees them and turns to them, “I told you not to come here. You’re not welcome you have to leave.” At first I thought he was kidding, apparently not since they left.

Wondering why, I looked down at the all white bar and tried to remember if I had ever seen anyone there that wasn’t white. Of course, the logical side of my brain tells me that if racism was the reason, the men would have filed a lawsuit, but then again, maybe not. It just made me wonder.

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Last night I tried some expensive eye cream, the rash is spectacular isn’t it?

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Sunday is the only day cars can park in front of my building.

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This is the reigning queen. She gave me one chance to take her picture.

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Beer gets siphoned into this bucket, then it is put into the bottles.

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With a spigot, unfortunately this one was leaking, I think a part was missing? Not sure but we coped.

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This is the priming sugar mixture before boiling. After boiling it is put in the bucket before the beer is put in.

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Sanitizing bottles.

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And here they are, ready to be filled.

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This is a wort chiller. When we brewed we had to put the beer in an ice bath, now Rose uses this, which she says in super duper fantastic and so much easier.

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This is the carboy with the brown ale in it, originally “Caribou Slobber”, I dubbed it “Bronze Medal Brown Ale” 😉

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This is the siphon to transfer the beer to the bucket, there is tubing that is attached to this.

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If your tubing comes out of the bucket you end up standing in beer which leads to a condition known as ‘beer feet’. I wonder if this ever happened to Sam Adams.

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Bottles are filled,

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Caps are sanitized,

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And this nifty tool squeezes the caps onto the bottles.

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We have beer!

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I had to carry mine up these stairs

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And here they are, my sixteen bottles safe and sound. Ready for consumption in 2 weeks.

Postcards

Dear man on the 6 train:

The man who thinks my size 6 body can fit in a space big enough for a toddler. I hope you diaf. I was going to write something witty and sarcastic, but I wasn’t sure you would understand me.

Love, big ole me

And there are 8 things you should know about Mesothelioma. They are listed on The Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance Blog.

My first job was at a place called “Tampa Rubber & Gasket”, some of the gaskets were cut from sheets of pressed asbestos. I should probably be more worried about this than I am, but I don’t think there is anything I could do about it at this point, other than just watch for symptoms and get regular screening. I keep telling Em, I’m not going to die of anything because nothing interesting happens to me. She always rolls her eyes at that.

Last Sunday was the 5th Annual Damon Runyon 5K at Yankee Stadium, a run/walk for cancer research. This is not the first 5K I have done for charity but this time I decided I would run. Mainly just for the personal satisfaction of running.

photo (3)I signed up in June and started training, that was probably a little short sighted of me since that gave me just 8 weeks to train. However I was convinced by the app I looked at that I could do it, I’m not going to say they lied, because I did have a few setbacks of my own, pain in my legs in the second week, unbearable heat for a week and I got sick. By the time the run came around I was at week six and the farthest I had run was 1.58 miles, a 5K is 3.1 miles. To say I was a little nervous when Sunday came around would be a bit of an understatement. Since I said I was going to run and had collected money to donate, I was determined to not quit. I picked up my race packet ahead of time and wrote the names of the people I was running for on the blue sign they provided for me in purple ink, then pinned it to my purple shirt, taking great care to make sure it was straight.

Standing in line waiting to go in I was rather preoccupied with thoughts that I would either trip, fall or die so I didn’t notice the people around me until a photographer said something to the woman behind me about being a Mets fan. She was wearing a Mets hat and Mets socks. She was also wearing a DR run shirt and had written all over it names, “In Honor” and “In Memory”, something I had planned on doing but never got around to. I also saw a boy in an Indians shirt and the lady behind me said she saw some in Red Sox shirts. Cancer’s not picky is what she said, I think.

20130821-130404.jpgAs I walked in I heard some people saying they were going to start off walking. That made me feel a little better, knowing that some others in the group were walking. As the race went on, most were running and walking, I felt like I fit right in. After the run was over I met up with the lady who had been behind me, who was actually a very nice Mets fan. That was when I found out I had actually done a smart thing signing up for the slowest group of runners, since that group is usually made up of slow runners and fast walkers. Score one for the rookie. The race course is inside Yankee Stadium, twice around the main level, then down to where Monument Park is, past the entrance to Mohegan Sun Sports bar around and out twice around the warning track. Runners are not allowed in the dugout, but no one stopped me from taking this picture, and see the front of the barricade there? I put my foot up there to retie my shoe. Then back inside and up the stairs to the 3rd level, down the ramp to the great hall, then to the right and back up the stair to the third level, 286 stair steps in total. Then back down to the finish line to pick up a bottle of water, a medal and a goodie bag.

After the run, when I was leaving the stadium, the woman who had been behind me asked me how I did. “I finished.” I said, she gave me a high five and we walked to the subway together. I got off at Columbus Circle and a couple carrying Damon Runyon goodie bags got off at the same time and exclaimed, “MORE STAIRS!”

There were photographers everywhere, now I have to decide which picture to buy, on the warning track? And if on the warning track, which picture on the warning track? The one of me running, sticking my tongue out at the photographer, or walking slowly looking at my phone? Maybe one of me inside on the stairs? Crossing the finish line or standing in the great hall with the Yankee logo behind my head? I might have to get all of them.

The ramen place wasn’t busy, so I plopped down and had some spicy ramen, my treat to myself for not giving up.

There were 2,559 participants, 1,321 were women, there were 79 women in my age group. Of the 2,559 I came in 1,975 and my time was 50:46. My next event? I’m thinking a 10K.

The Gulag Archipelago

GulagIn The Gulag Archipelago (which is about the Russian prison system, and which I have decided to abandon at page #132) Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn talks about the periods of mass arrests. He refers to them as rivers, the wave of 1929 and 1930, the size of a good River Ob, and later 1944 to 1946, the size of a good Yenisei. The other day as I waited for the train, I thought about what an accurate description of people that was, because the people keep coming not caring what is in their way. If it is something big, they move around it, something small, and they just run over it, push it out of the way. Even if that thing is a person, like me.

This is what happens in the train, people come like a river, they keep coming even when there is no more room. Even when I want to shout, “There’s no more room in here! Wait for the next train!” On the subway platform when the train has been delayed they keep coming, they look down the stairs at the mass of people and think, “There’s room for one more.” Except everyone looking down is thinking the same thing, so instead of one more there is ten more, then ten more after that.

Don’t do it, just take the bus.

I stopped writing about my commute because I was tired of writing the same thing everyday. I figured everyone must be tired of reading it too. Then I changed to the #4 and it just sat there! There were 5 million people on the train and it only holds 2 million etc. Anyway, things have changed in my commute.

The first thing is my route to the subway station has changed. This is the sidewalk I normally walk on to get to the subway. I don’t know what they are doing here but the sidewalk is almost completely blocked off. This picture was taken on my way home, in the morning the workers are there and you can’t walk up nearly this far. So they have made a ‘pedestrian walkway’.
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Which is just cones put out on the road to re-direct traffic, and this is a rather narrow road, it makes more sense to walk on the sidewalk on the other side of the street. Which I would do except,
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IMG_1558They are working on the entrance to the subway, so I have to cross the street anyway. So walking down to 96th Street is really the best way to go except, there is a fruit stand at 95th and 3rd where I like to get my breakfast, and being human I am a creature of habit and automatically turn left at 95th street. I also don’t like having to change my routine. After two years of walking the same way to the subway I have to do something different and it annoys me. So I come here to vent and to post pictures, I am really just trying to get back into the habit of writing so if this bores you or YOU are annoyed that with all the bad things happening lately I am going on about having to change my routine, I’m sorry I’m not sorry. Meaning I don’t feel bad about writing this. Because of all the bad that happened last week, I need to get back to my routine and the MTA is not helping! If you are still reading this, thank you for reading and I promise I’ll get better.