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Back In The Saddle Again

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This morning I took my first training ride.  About 5 miles round-trip to folks house and back.  Overall, not bad.  I topped out at 27 mph (going down hill, cranking for all I was worth).  I need to check the bike computer, but I probably averaged around 12 or 13 mph.  My goal for the SLO Lighthouse ride is 62 miles in 3.5 hours.  So I have until September 24 to shave ~two hours off.

When I was in high school I had a purple Raleigh Olympian (pictured above).  Purple became my new riding color.  The handle bars were wrapped with purple and while tape, my helmet and riding gear were purple.  Everything but my pump and shoes were purple.  When I went looking for my current bike, I posted that I gave extra points for purple.

I was convinced that because the name of the bike was ‘Olympian’, it must mean that this was the bike that was used in the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul.  I proudly boasted this fact to anyone who would listen.  In hindsight, I realize that it was probably not true.

I rode that bike for about six years until it finally gave up the ghost.  My parents paid the neighbors $100 for it in 1988.  I was so excited I could plotz.  I like to think that they got their $100 worth.

Now that I think about it, today was the longest ride I have had in probably 15 years.  Let’s see how I feel about it (literally) tomorrow morning.

And so it goes.

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RUSH

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Alex Lifeson, Geddy Lee, and Neil Peart of Rush30th Anniversary tour photo, 2004

Happy Fathers Day all.

For those of you who know me, you know that I have a particular affinity for the band Rush.  I first heard about Rush when I was a sophmore in high school.  I was dating a flute player at the time, so I started hanging out in the band room.  All of the drummers listened to this band called Rush.  I started listen to the group and I really liked them.  I got to know one of the drummer pertty well, Jim, and he lent me a video of a Rush concert called A Show Of Hands.

I took the video out to my car and started reading the back of the VCR box.  That was when I read that Rush was comprised of just three guys.  I was really impressed that three guys could make such complex music.  The more I listened to them, the more I liked them.  Their first album, self-title Rush was relased when I was four months old.  They relased their 19th original album, Snakes and Arrows last year.  The style of music has changed through the years, but it all carries the same spirit that makes it fun to listen to.

Of all the people I know who have heard Rush, I can put them all into one of two camps: I Love Rush or I Hate Rush.  (I am sure that I have met some people who are luke warm, that doesn’t make for a good blog post.  So I’ll follow the general example set by the government (all of them, not just the current) and pretend that they don’t exist so I can make my point much, much more dramatic that it really is.) There is also a nearly perfect correlation bewteen love and hate and musician, not musican.  I think you have to be a musician to really appreciate what they do.  Just like being a writer enhances your ablity to discern great writing.

This year marks the 20th year that I have been a Rush fan.  I hope to teach my kids how neat Rush is.  I don’t care if they don’t like Rush, but I will teach them to appreciate Rush.

And so it goes.

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Hi kids.

 Well, let me get everyone caught up now that Leela is here.  I’ll start with the birth.

Leela was born at home with help from the midwives at One Heart Midwife care.  After Mary was born at home (by accident) we decided that we had quite enough of the hospital birth experience, so we opted for a home birth.  Casey was about a week over due and she made the decision to try to induce labor naturally.  I took some time off of work and we walked around the park and tried to stay active.  The midwives came over the house at about 10:30 pm and gave Casey some blue and black cohosh, a herb that is supposed to do something or other and help labor along.  After several doses, Casey was not progressing, so the midwives left at about 4 am to get some rest.  They returned later that morning to apply some more direct methods.  They feed her some castor oil and more herbs.  Four hours after the Castor oil, Casey was having stronger contractions.  At that point, the midwives broke her waters.  (Don’t ask me why ‘waters’ is plural.)  Once that was done, Casey’s contractions became stronger and more frequent.  At about 5 pm the midwives brought a 150 gallon tub into the room and filled it with warm water.  Do you have any idea out quickly that will raise the temperature of a room?  Very quickly.  Casey got into the tub and started to labor much harder.  At about 8 pm I got into the tub with Casey and sat behind her, supporting her body with mine.  At 8:44 Leela Joy was born under water.  When she came out of the water, her eyes were open.  They laid her in our arms and she started to cough and cry.  It was really neat.  We stayed in the water for 20 more minutes while the midwives delivered the placenta.  Casey and Leela got out of the water and into bed.  I changed out of my trunks and into something less wet and more comfortable.  Casey started to nurse Leela and everything calmed down a bit.  It was at least 30 minutes after the birth before we cut the cord.  One of the midwives showed us the placenta and the signs they were looking for to make sure Leela had developed properly.  No problems found.  The midwives hung out until about midnight and headed home. 

The most interesting thing about this birth experience is that there were only five people in the room the entire time.  It was quite and dimly lit with none of the raucous energy that accompanied the other births.  This was a much calmer, ‘every thing will be fine’ engery.  Much nicer.

I recommend a home birth for anyone who wishes to try it.  It will be great.

And so it goes.

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Enter the Net!

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Wow.  It really feels good to be back.  Wow.  I am sitting at my old computer.  Finally.  I an drinking a Full Sail Amber Ale which was concocted by a ‘massive brew force of 47.’  Finally.  I am riding the nebulous and mysterious Internet again.  Finally. 

Now I know what you are thinking.  It is a computer.  Get over it.  You drink beer like every damn night and you have the Internet at work.  There are plenty of people in this world who are off a lot worse than you right now.  You should just get off your melodramatic high horse Mr. Oliver.  You make me sick.  You make the bile rise in my gullet.  I hate you.  That’s right.  I HATE YOU! 

Well, you might not be thinking that, exactly.  But if you were thinking it (except for the hate part.  I don’t do hate) then I have to agree.  I am wineing.  Beering actually. 

 So, what is new.  A lot.  I have spent the last few weeks installing compact fluorescent bulbs in anything that puts out light in this house.  (Ryan, I am sorry.  I have been in the PROC for too long already.  It is rubbing off.)  I figure that I have spent about $200 on bulbs so I can save a few bucks.  Where’s the feet? Oh, and I hear it is good for the environment.  Oh, don’t get me started on the environment!  For eons, ‘mother’ nature has beset us with tornadoes, floods, hurricanes and locusts.  Now she wants to quit because she is loosing?  Well, I say hard cheese. 

I am listen to Bach right now.  Die Kunst Der Fugue.  There is no greater musical master than Bach.  I’ll have to blog about Bach blater. 

Where was I?  Oh yes.  Catching up.  You really need to keep me on task or we will never get through this. 

Mary took what could be loosely considered to be her first step today.  She can move from a sit to a stand now and can forward motion with her body.  All she has to do is get a foot in front of her and she it she. 

Sammy has been coming along very well with his language.  For those of you who do not know, Sammy has a speech delay.  Casey could explain it better than I can.  About 70% of what he says is not readily intelligible.  He gets that from me.  He has been in the school district special ed working on it and it is really starting to pay off. 

Noelle is really enjoying kindergarten.  The whole experience is very strange to watch.  She clearly has friends at school, but I don’t know them.  She has interactions with at least 40 or 50 people a day, but I don’t see it.  She grows and matures and I am not there.  The funny thing is that as a parent, that is exactly what you want.  You want them to move away from you.  You want them to develop their own wings and fly.  But it is still somewhat hard to watch.  My oldest child is now in a place in her life where she does not need me as much in the way that I have been so very accustomed to.  She still needs me as much, but in a more complex way.  Now I need to be her daddy who will beat up the daddy of the other kid as she forges ahead.  Soon she won’t even need that.   Then I will be running around beating up random fathers just to try and keep a taste my daughters youth.  Oh well.

I need to warn you all right now, that I may not be able to pull the phlog together.  I will try.  I promise!  Really I do!  I have been getting all sorts of requests in relation to the phlog.  I try to add tags so random people who are tagsurfing will read my writings.  Here is a sample of what people have said in the past:

“I don’t know who you think you are, but these are copyrighted pictures.  If you don’t remove them from you blog I will have lawyers all over your ass like Garfield on a lasagna.” 

And

“I know who you are, and if you don’t stay away from my track and field events, I am going to do something else with this pole vault.”

And my all time favorite:

“This is amazing.  The rich interplay of light and shadow make for a truly unique offering.  The medium of the picture looks to be a napkin.  Verily, I say, a work of inspiration.  The browns and greens mingle so nicely.  The faint string of red with the opaque background is something to behold.  I will treasure this picture forever.”

What is so funny about that last one is that I blew my nose into an napkin and gave to an art student from UNLV.  Good times. 

Wow, this one just kept going, huh?  It has been nice it express again.  My dear fri-end Linda make a comment to me that she would do this even if no one read it.  Agree.  (and after that booger comment, I don’t know if anyone will ever read this again.)  And a shout out to my dear peep Linda.  Happy Anniversary!  I don’t know the exact date, but I think it was about a year ago (give or take a week or three) that we met.   

The next few blogs will feature things like a highlight of a buddy and a song that has no name.  I will post it and you good folks will get to name it for me. 

Oh, and Ev, this one’s for YOU!

And so it goes.

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