Running Logbook

2018-12-17 - Dinosaur Skeleton

~6.5 mi @ ~13.8 min/mi

"This toy has gotten smaller in the past six months!" Roadkill complains, astride the Colt Terrace playground rocking-duck. (Can't possibly be that something else is now much larger!) Barry leads a Sunday afternoon jog past puddles and Christmas decorations. A skeletal tyrannosaur guards one front yard.

"I did make a mistake once — when I said, incorrectly, that I was wrong!" We meander with confidence, backtrack from dead-ends, and discover a new cut-through at Evans Parkway Park. Barry's proposal to square his training distance provokes a lecture on dimensional analysis.

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-16

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2018-12-16 - Ganglion Cyst

~3.7 mi @ ~13.3 min/mi

"We don't smoke! We don't drink! Norfolk! Norfolk!" somebody quotes a rumored cheer-leading chant from a coastal Virginia school. Rain pauses for Slow-Twitch and Court Jester to escort Roadkill on a Sunday Morning tour of the neighborhood. A pack of runners chase us along the Bethesda Trolley Trail, as we catch up on family news and give thanks for friendship, kindness, health, and safe spaces. Sculptures and totem poles at the Strathmore Arts Center are eye-catching.

"Your Mother could run an ultra without complaining on a foot like that!" Sympathy abounds when Roadkill exhibits the strange lump (ganglion cyst?) atop his right foot. Likeliest diagnosis: extreme laziness. Prescription: "Up your mileage!"

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-09

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2018-12-15 - Book Drop

~5.1 mi @ ~11.5 min/mi

"Northeast Passage - found!" Roadkill runs on Saturday afternoon through heavy rains to pick up a book on reserve at the Silver Spring library. Return ramble (book safely bagged against the elements) rediscovers the long-lost Alton Parkway path that he and Barry failed to find 4 weeks ago.

"That's an ugly bump!" The top of the old right foot suddenly starts to hurt badly at mile ~3.5, then recovers after a short walk. Ganglion cyst? Stress fracture? Or more likely, overactive imagination plus hypochondria? Today's soggy solo trek is overdue atonement for past and future dietary sins. More mileage (and fewer desserts), STAT!

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-07

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2018-12-14 - Naughty Foods

~3.9 mi @ ~14.2 min/mi

"They're visible from space! My neighbors can't get any sleep!" Christmas lights shine bright at K2's place, thanks to her Better Half's creative energy in decoration. Dawn Patrol rambles in search of holiday ornaments through the Balls Hill neighborhood. Conversation likewise rambles through a discussion of naughty-sounding foods ("Chef's Chocolate Salty Balls", "Spotted Dick", "Sex on the Beach", "Slutty Brownies"), cryptocurrency wallets, family vacation plans, etc.

"Fun Bun passed away this week. There were tears — and there will be no more indoor pets!" The much-loved rabbit in residence at K-Rex's home is now buried in the front yard; a memorial marker is on order. As Richard Adams wrote in Watership Down, "My heart has joined the Thousand, for my friend stopped running today." And we who remain shall keep taking care of each other.

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-06

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2018-12-12 - Hugs and Kisses

~6.6 mi @ ~13.7 min/mi

"It's like being a parent, but without the hugs and kisses!" K-Rex captures the essence of the manager's job in a busy high-performance organization. Dawn Patrol random-walks based on where Xmas lights catch our eyes. Suddenly we realize that we're touring a neighborhood via the reverse of a course we took one week ago. Everything looks so different when inverted! "That's a Category Theory principle," notes Roadkill, predictably. Trail talk includes the importance of safe places to live, shop, work, learn, and just be — especially valuable as catalysts of open, soft, joyful peace of mind.

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-05

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2018-12-10 - Xmas Inflation

~5 miles @ ~15 min/mi

"We should put some money in their mailbox to help pay their electrical bill!" K2 & K-Rex admire a hyper-Christmas-spirited home at the corner of Storm and Pimmit Drive. The cozy front yard is dense with decorations: Santas, elves, dogs, candy canes, sleighs, trucks, hot air balloons, and at least one unicorn. The hum of air compressors blankets the neighborhood. Impressive display!

"We are not alone!" Mindful trail talk reviews the needs that all share for respect, affirmation, esteem, understanding, and a measure of control over circumstances. It definitely helps to have a sympathetic ear. Major GPS glitching while inside Starbucks adds a bonus of ~1.6 miles to the trackfile. Dawn Patrol doesn't actually run 6.66 miles!

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-03

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2018-12-09 - Western Ridge

~10.2 mi @ ~14.3 min/mi

"What was the Quote of The Day? Something about forgetfulness?" Professor Rebecca and Barry crunch through mounds of brown leaves on the Western Ridge Trail, joking and meta-joking, as Roadkill leads the way back. Two horses climb the hill and turn south. Humidity is high; temperature hovers at freezing, portending snow.

"Oops!" Steppingstones in Pinehurst Branch, a tributary of Rock Creek, are small and tippy and too far apart for 2/3rds of us to cross with dry feet. No matter, on a quiet day in the woods with good friends!

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-01-02

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2018-12-08 - Tea for Three

~14.0 mi @ ~16.2 min/mi"And but for the sky there are no fences facing!" Roadkill sings at mile 10. Mr Tambourine Man (aka Barry) notes the absence of barriers, bushwhacks up a slope in Kensington, then pauses for pics by a giant stone head. Today's temps begin in the mid-20s as Crabby (aka Cait) trots to Barry's 'hood. Roadkill leads the way via a cemetery where American Founding Father Daniel Carroll is buried. We run hill repeats; Cait spies a family of lawn dinosaurs.

"Does the Second Amendment guarantee the right to bare not just arms but also, uh, ...?" someone wonders, as we trot along Sligo Creek and discuss top-free sunbathing, subject of a current lawsuit in Ocean City. Bawdy banter pauses at the Colt Terrace playground for feats of strength and toy-duck-riding. Roadkill rolls an already-twingy right ankle during an off-trail cut-through. We meet Robin near Wheaton Regional Park and pause to sip green gunpowder tea that she has kindly prepared to warm us. Thank you, Ma'am!
"Cross Traffic Does Not Stop" warns the sign at the intersection of Grandview and Arcola Avenues, where two cars have just collided. A few blocks later at mile 8 Cait's knee suddenly goes bad, possibly an ITB issue. We await her husband Bill's arrival; she reminisces about drawing chalk outlines around childhood playmates in the street, faux crime scenes to startle passers-by.

"You, Sir, are The Bad Influence today!" Roadkill salutes Barry, who takes us on a scramble through a brushy ravine to Einstein High School. Plans for speedwork on the track are thwarted by ongoing construction to upgrade the football field. Trail talk today includes superhero films, plans to see holiday lights, upcoming race logistics, and family news.

(trackfile) - ^z - 2018-12-31

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2018-12-07 - Dreams and Code Words

~7.4 mi @ ~14.6 min/mi

"Slippery slope!" K2 warns, as K-Rex tells of a Pony Play-Date offered by the local stables for young people. Likewise, a half-mile walk-run on which K2 took a colleague who said, "I can't run" — first steps on a slippery-slope toward ultramarathoning! Dawn Patrol lopes along, talking about calendar issues (don't ask!) and codewords for Recent Events That Must Not Be Spoken Of.

"I had a very interesting dream last night!" — the most frightening sentence in the English Language, according to Oscar Wilde, disproved by K2 as she describes a kindly-portentous dream. A hawk takes off from the ground near us as we approach. Such a wonderful morning!

(trackfile) - ^z - 2018-12-29

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2018-12-05 - Dawn Patrol with Cait

~5.4 mi @ ~13.7 min/mi

"Are you going to wait until I die before you propose to her?" asks somebody's Grandma, impatient about the engagement process's slow pace. (Deservedly so: she donated a diamond to get things going!) Dawn Patrol is rejoined by Caitlin, who tells of cutthroat competition for over-the-top holiday lawn decorations in her parents' neighborhood. Christmas lights on a tree glitter in reflection off a glass-fronted home; adjacent three-garage mini-mansions feature giant inflatable ornaments. Laser-projected spots converge into snowflake shapes and dissolve into speckles. Spiky pastel-glowing spheres cling to tree limbs. K-Rex navigates through McLean cut-through paths on a frosty morning.

(trackfile) - ^z - 2018-12-28

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