Monday, June 20, 2016

Irvine Lake Summer of Mud 2016

Saturday was the second of 3 runs this month.  Fortunately, it wasn’t quite as hot then as it is today (111 according to my phone).  But it was close.  Upper 90’s to over 100 depending on where you were.

This was Irvine Lake, which I usually do in the spring.  I didn’t want to sign up for their “spring” run this year, which was the end of February, because I was worried about the weather.  Turned out that was a beautiful weekend.  But I signed up for this one instead.

The start of the race as in a different location than normal, which really through me.  But we still ran along much of the normal loop.  This is a run known for the volume of mud they usually had, but they had less of it than normal this year due to the drought.  While that is disappointing, I completely understand and respect that.

I’d gotten a stain on my white dress shirt, and I’d been saving it for this run.  I got lots of comments on it before the race, and it was very muddy by the end of the race.  There may have been less mud, but there was still enough to get muddy.

Plus they still had the mud slide.  That’s one of my favorite parts of this particular run, so I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest.

I must have been part of a crowd.  I didn’t feel like it, but I had to wait in line for the mud slide (totally worth it) and for the showers afterward.  However, any other time I looked at those things, they didn’t have many people if anyone waiting for it at all.  Go figure, right?

After the fun of the run, I got to visit my friends Chris and Erin and Joy and Christopher.  We met up at Chris and Erin’s new house.  We had a late lunch and played games.  I was about to leave when we decided to watch Minions, which I hadn’t seen yet, so I stuck around.  I didn’t get home until after 11, but it was a great day.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Summer League Games 1 and 2

It’s the second week of June, which means we are already two weeks into another ultimate Frisbee league.  This time, it’s Summer League.

And my team is off to a consistent start – we’ve had a final score of 7-15 both games.  Yep, so far I’m on a team that is losing.  Augh!!!  Is it too much to ask for a few wins in a season?  Please?

That first game was rough for me.  I only played two points, and after getting scored on by a guy who took off and I couldn’t stick with, I never stepped back on the field.  Between that and losing, I was depressed.  So depressed, it thought about quitting and it took me about a day to get over it.

Fortunately, I had a much better second game.  It helped that this was Chuck’s team.  Chuck and I have been matching up against each other since I started playing in 1999, and I love guarding him since we are very similarly skilled.  I played more points than I normally do, too, since we both wanted to play.

That first point I was in, I got the disc multiple times, successfully passing it on before we scored.  That felt so good.  I can’t even tell you how amazing that felt.  I was never as involved in a play again, although I did get it and pass it on a couple more times.  In fact, I never had a turn over.  And Chuck only got it once, although that was because his team didn’t throw it to him, not because I was that good on defense.

As a team, we did better the second half of the first game and the first half of the second game.  Now, if we could just put the two halves together, we might be a contender.

My team is really nice.  I knew my captains already, which always makes me feel good – they knew what they were getting/stuck with when they got me.  I’ve gone out to the bar we hang out at after both games, something my team hasn’t wanted to do for a couple of seasons, and I was having so much fun this week I stayed until almost midnight.  That made for a long day the next day, but I had fun.

Our next game is Wednesday.  Hopefully, we’ll get one in the win column.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Camp Pendleton Mud Run 2016

Saturday, I kicked off June with one of my favorite mud runs – the Camp Pendleton Mud Run.  This is my seventh year in a row doing it, so obviously I like it.

They’ve added a 5K distance, but I continue to do the 10K distance.  After all, after I drive two hours one way down there, I’m going to spend as much time as possible doing the race.  Yeah, I still run it, but I do so many 5K mud runs it’s nice to do something longer.  Plus it makes me train more, which is always good.

They added a few new elements this year, mainly involving us carrying things out and back.  When I first started, it was a run for the first half, so it is nice to break it up more.  They keep adding more elements every year.

Of course, there is mud – four pits along the way, three of them in the back half.  It’s always fun to roll through the mud and see muddy I can get.

The course is beautiful.  Yes, it’s dry, although the burned portions are beginning to grow back.  No new trees, but bushes, and it’s not nearly as obvious where it burned out a couple of years ago.  Anyway, I enjoy the hills and the views.  There’s something special about being out in nature like this for the run.  Plus, it’s a rare opportunity to be on a military base.  It may be the only one I’ve been on.

I couldn’t have asked for a better day weather wise.  I was worried when I got up because my hotel was foggy, but the sun was coming out by the time I got on base.  It was perfectly sunny and in the lower 70’s.  Warm enough that the mud felt nice but not too hot.

Of course, afterward, I went into Oceanside and grabbed lunch at Pit Stop, a restaurant that Ian introduced me to a couple of years ago.  Their Chicken Strip Wrap is so delicious.

On the way home, I stopped by Downtown Disney for a little pin shopping.  I wound up finding some I wanted to buy.  No fun new ornaments, but there was a mug I had to get as well.

I made another stop on the way home – a LA Aviators game.  This was the first of their games I’ve been to this season.  It was a great game, with the Aviators pulling out a win in the final quarter of the game.

All told, Saturday was a very tiring day, but it was a great day.

Thursday, June 02, 2016

Word Association for June 2nd

I should be in bed, but here I am doing this week's word association instead.

  1. Trailer :: Fun
  2. Marvel :: Comics
  3. Socks :: Shoes
  4. Clump :: of Clay
  5. Pick :: Ax
  6. Yellow :: Curtains
  7. Punished :: Wrong
  8. Brass :: Ring
  9. Splatter :: Paint
  10. Parts :: Car

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Fun Memorial Day Weekend

You’ll notice I was pretty radio silent last week.  That’s because not too much happened.  It was a very quiet weekend at home, and a pretty standard week of work/reading/reviewing.  I did get out and do more this last weekend.  It was a long weekend, after all.

In fact, the weekend started a little early since I got to leave work early on that Friday.  I used the extra time to go see Alice Through the Looking Glass.  I wasn’t holding out much hope for this movie, but I wound up liking it.  Really no connection to the books other than character names, but it was enjoyable.

Saturday, my church had a picnic at a park here in town I didn’t even know existed.  Apparently, it isn’t usually open to the public, but we got to go in and enjoy the grounds.  It was a great day.

Sunday was the usual, church, ultimate Frisbee, and then some TV time with some friends.  Since Once Upon a Time has ended for the season, we are watching Big Bang Theory at the moment.  Ultimate Frisbee turned out to have numbers too low to really play, which was disappointing, but the weather outside was absolutely gorgeous.  I wish we’d had more because it was a great day to play.

Monday, I got a good dose of disc sports, but disc golf instead of ultimate Frisbee.  I met up with some of my ultimate Frisbee friends, and we wound up playing a couple of rounds at the course in Sylmar.  My lack of distance throwing continued to be a problem for me, but the company was fun.  The down side is that I got very sunburned.  I thought I’d be okay in the shade when I remembered it.  Of course, I also was only counting on playing one round, not two.  Being out in the sun for 5 hours will leave you sun burned for sure.

In between all of that, I started on my annual season of Smallville.  I’m up to season 9, and I think I’m going to go ahead and watch season 10 this summer as well.  Usually, I have the season I’m watching mostly finished between the end of the regular TV season and the start of the summer TV season.  Not this year.  There really was no break.  Heck, Royal Pains started their final season before everything was even over.  But I will get through it as best I can while trying to get some extra reading in.  I did that this weekend.  I finished one book Saturday morning and read another one over the next few days.  I read most of it on Monday, finishing it before I went to bed.

Given all that, there was still so much I wanted to get in that I didn’t.  I need another couple of days off!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Word Association for May 26th

Time to get in this week's word association.

  1. Disdain :: Hatred
  2. Ridiculous :: Situation
  3. Staple :: Office supplies
  4. Junk :: Too much stuff
  5. Sally :: Nightmare Before Christmas
  6. Satire :: Funny
  7. Calculate :: Add
  8. Remove :: Block
  9. Swollen :: River
  10. Helpful :: Advice

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Word Association for May 19th

I'm going to slip in this week's word association before I go to bed.

  1. Relevant :: to the Discussion
  2. Fester :: Wound
  3. Moving :: Van
  4. Bubble :: Blowing
  5. Skyline :: City
  6. Purchase :: Books
  7. Strange :: Behavior
  8. Sticky :: Situation
  9. Haircut :: Clippers
  10. Package :: Delivered

Monday, May 16, 2016

Men’s Beach Tournament

So Saturday was the Men’s Beach League Tournament.  It pretty much went as expected.  Translation: We lost both of our games.

We had the lowest turnout of any of the teams, at least as far as I saw.  We had four subs the first game and three the second.  When I’m one of those subs (since I’m a slow runner) and the other team has a full field of subs plus some, you are in trouble.

But both games were hard fought.  We never just gave up but played each game as hard as we could.  Want proof?  I was having trouble staying awake to read at 6 PM that night.  Yes, I was that exhausted.

And we had fun.  I mean, seriously, we were playing ultimate on the beach in beautiful weather.  What’s not to love?

I got a very light burn that I’m hoping will turn into a tan.  However, it will turn into a very fun tan line since it clearly shows I was wearing a tank top.

I really would like to be on a team that wins occasionally.  Heck, would it be that much to ask for to be on a team that wins half their games?  But I wouldn’t have skipped this season had I known how it would turn out.

Now, to find reasons to get to the beach other times.  I really need to go to the beach more often.

Monday, May 09, 2016

Savage Beach

This last Saturday was the last regular week of men’s beach league for the year.  And my team only had five guys show up.  We play five on the field at a time, so that meant we were playing savage.  In fact, I showed up late, so we were playing down a man and savage when I showed up.

The first game started our relatively close.  In fact, we took half, and then we went up 7-5.  But that’s when we ran out of gas.  We didn’t score another point for the rest of the game.

The second game was against another savage team.  Unfortunately, they’d had a while to rest up before we played them, so we were more tired than they were.  We got 3 points before they got to 11.

But I will say what I’ve been saying all season – I was on the beach.  The weather was nice.  It was partly cloudy and a very slight breeze.  In fact, it was so nice I headed down toward the water and sat there reading until I finished my book.  I figured, I wanted to finish it that day one place or another, and the beach was a nicer place to do that than my living room.

This coming weekend is the tournament.  Fortunately, we could still win the entire thing.  We’d have to play very differently if that were to happen, but it is a distinct possibility.

Friday, May 06, 2016

Malice Domestic

The rest of my trip, I was at Malice Domestic, a mystery convention dedicated to cozy mysteries, which is the kind of mystery I like to read.  I just posted a long post about it on my review blog, so I’m going to direct you over there if you want to read about it.

Instead, I’ll talk here about some of the down points, like my hotel room.  I wasn’t staying at the conference hotel, but instead stayed half a mile away.  It wasn’t a bad walk at all, and I didn’t mind.  However, they have one of those heating options that is either hot or cold, and they’d switched it to AC before I arrived.  My room was cold that first night.  They didn’t turn on the heat again until late in the second day I was there, but it had warmed up significantly before I went to bed, which was fantastic.

The flight home was an adventure as well.  I had two carry-ons coming home, my normal backpack and the bag I’d gotten at registration.  I was trying to avoid having to ship books home.  They plane home was packed, and they didn’t have room for all the carry-ons.  Guess who was stopped when he was boarding the plane for having two carry-ons.  Yep.  So I checked the bag full of books.

That would have been a brilliant plan, expect we hit a huge thunderstorm in Chicago, where I had a transfer.  It delayed us from leaving for an hour, and when I arrived in LA, I discovered that a few of my books were wet.  I had to talk to them to make a claim in that case, which delayed me so much that I missed a shuttle back to where I’d parked my car.  All told, I didn’t get home until 2:30AM Monday morning and had to be at work that day.  Yes, I was a bit slow and fuzzy, but I made it through the day.  And, in even better news, I think my books will dry out without any real damage, so that’s good as well.  They weren’t wet enough to be ruined, but they certainly aren’t in perfect shape any more.

Yes, this is a complaining post.  But really, go see the other post and you’ll see that I did have a fantastic time.  I had some complications along the way, but overall it was a great trip.