Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Bowl II

I overlooked a picture with the photographer - and dog whisperer, Jenna (on the right-the one with two drinks!)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Bowl

Back when I could flex my left arm (and apparently do a Joker grin):

Here are some pics with my running buddies from the Jobe's annual Superbowl party. I didn't win any squares, but I was wearing my cool shirt from Jenny & Tim that lists me as "Seeker #1" on the back.

With the pup - no worries - there are shorts under that skirt.

With the boys - Pete (on the far right) finished up repeat chemo. He's super strong.

Thanks to Jenna for the pics!

One-armed woman job

I scoff when I read "recommended two person assembly" in any assembly instructions. Mostly because I only have dogs and cats and no "persons" to help me with assembly. So, I can usually figure out how to assemble something upside down or sideways to do it myself. Well, with a separated shoulder, I'm not only one person, but kind of a one-armed person.
So, I worked some overtime and decided to order a new couch that I got for a steal. Before I ordered it, though, I wanted to make sure that I could move my 20ish year old hide-a-bed, heavy-as-heck sofa into the dogs' room. I measured over and over, because I live in a crooked house (doorframe is 29" at the top and 28" at the bottom for that room), and measured the angles. Anyway, I managed to tie off the bed, tip the couch, push it into the study, then push it into the doggies' room (a/k/a the room of furniture past) - in a sling. And it worked. It hurt a little - I didn't move the mattress enough and had to do a one-armed lift of the front of the sofa, but now the dogs are PSYCHED! Too bad the other couch won't get here for weeks - guess I'll have to bunk in with the doggies for naps.

In other news, Simba the cat is pissed the dogs got her couch, and I managed to run 6 miles Tuesday. They were painful and icky-feeling (unstable shoulder)-but I could do it.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

No race weekend

Well, I had planned on running the UTSA Diploma Dash 5k this morning - fo' free, even. But I took a quick test run last night and decided the race probably was not a good idea. Without the sling, the pain was okay, but the shoulder feels weird - both tight and lose at the same time. With the sling, running just felt plain weird. I do not have much arm swing when I run, but it is still strange to run with one arm tied down. I felt pretty off-balance.

So, with no race, and no desire to try to perform one-armed housecleaning, I decided to come into work and make some overtime money. I would sure rather be running.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Thursday, February 19, 2009

So what didya do anyway?

Broke myself, that' s what. Man, it is hard to get around with one arm. I fought an ATM for 10 minutes today - and it won. I don't think you realize how much you use your non-dominant arm until you need $40 from your checking account or try to grab a bad dingo dog's collar. And I don't have a dishwasher, so I'm sure you can hear me screaming in frustration - major twisting is involved in dishwashing by hand. I so want use of both my arms - and, though the pain has thankfully diminished, I can still feel the instability of bones sliding in my shoulder (without the connecting tendon, the joint is not stable) - ewww.

So, here's a little pictoral of how it happened: I would post pics here, but it hurts to mouse, click, and type. So you get links. Here's the start - I'm wide and in red with the ponytail - looking into the dark, dark yonder. Here's the blind finish #22. I'll try to post decent pics - once I heal and get back to full service! Apologies for any one-handed typos. I'm off to re-ice my bum shoulder
Thanks to Chris M for the pics

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Separation anxiety

Well, my little fall, like the Chupacabras fall, wasn't so little. I actually ended up with a Grade I/II shoulder separation. And I aggravated the injury by running another 10k, lifting the 50+ pound dogs into the dogwash (they WILL learn to use the stairs and like it), and cleaning the house. So, now there is significant swelling, too. If it doesn't feel better by the end of the week with conservative treatment, I get to have some MRI fun. But if it does feel better, I can run Saturday's race - in a sling!

Happy Holidays!

Yep, we at Brak Pak have other things on our plates and are busy organizing in the here and now. So, finally, here are the Brak Pak holiday post-run BBQ (tamale style) pictures from December. You'll notice, in a cruel game of white elephant giving, I opened a lovely little keg o' beer. And I held it, and loved it, and called it George. Until John stole it almost immediately - in the following picture. The whole slide show is here. It hurts anew to see my loss all over again. (Really, I got over it :-) )

Thanks to Darlene for the pics - and the tamales!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Tired Valentine's Day Weekend

Last night, I ran the Cupid's 10k headlamp run. It was similar to the Chupacabra run - a nighttime trail run beginning in the dark, through the woods, along semi-marked trails. It was less technical than the ol' Chupacabra, but it is still rough to run technical trails in road shoes with less than adequate light. Next time, I get a police spotlight and mountain shoes. I fell around mile 4.5, but this time I managed to fall on grass and dirt instead of rocks. Same left (bum) hip though - I need to practice PLFs off the roof landing on my right side, but I was trained to the left, and it's automatic. After the race, I ate a delicious vegiburger with Alamo Ale and hit the sack at around midnight.

Then I awoke at 0630 for the Bird Lovers' 10k. My hip was okay - just a dull roar of pain - but my feet hurt. Apparently, when you wear trail shoes, you don't feel EVERY rock. Anyway, I was in decent shape (e.g. not wincing), so I ventured forth to the 3rd annual Bird Lovers' 10k at Mitchell Lake. San Antonio natives tell me this venue used to be a sewage treatment facility, but now it's a series of nice, soft trails around containment ponds. I took it easy and saw swans and a bunch of other birdies. And fought the wind that came in last night. Here's the first ugly race pic available:

The outfit was my ode to St. Valentine and all. Afterward, the Brak Pak hit Joe and Bernice's place waaaaay outside loop 410 (where I seldom venture) for delicious BBQ. For the rest of the 3-day weekend, I'm going to avoid running, wash the salt out of my eyes, ice my hip, catch up on household chores, and pay attention to the critters.

Thanks to Tom Lake for the pic - except for when you ran passed me along the route.

Friday, February 13, 2009


I received this article in the mail from my friend, Jenna, who talked me into "fostering" (forever) a pit bull named Gwen almost a year and a half ago. Gwen and I are very happy for all the rescued pups - all dogs deserve good homes. But it looks like Gwen may need to buff up before hitting the cover of Sports Illustrated:

Here we go

Yes, it is race weekend, folks. That means a quick snack and nap after work, a 10k in the deepest darkest depths of the woods on trails tonight (trying not to fall), a little post-race party at Momak's, a 10k at Mitchell Lake in the morning (thankfully flatter and not so rocky), and a post-race Brak Pak BBQ at the Sepulvedas. I'm glad I have Monday off. The dogs and I may do a siesta Sunday.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Brak Pak Attack

No, this is not a picture of my bust. Well, okay, it is. But not in a porn-y way. In an awesome new shirt way! I run with a group of folks on Tuesday and Thursday nights, with many Saturday/Sunday long runs thrown in. It's a great bunch - in the two or so years I have run with these folks, we have been through cancer in the family, births, deaths, divorces, losses of jobs, weddings, celebrating the life of a spouse who died in combat, etc. On the road, we have run many races, finished marathons, qualified for Boston, pushed cars, suffered cramps, experienced every known running injury, undergone surgeries, puked, consumed beers, and been hit on by homeless gentlemen (okay, that last one seems to somehow be exclusive to me). And much, much more. This year, we plan to run the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C.
Like I said, a great bunch. One thing we're not, though, is an 'organized' running group. We joke about charging dues and fines and writing bylaws. We do occasionally get organized, however, and have BBQs or order shirts. Like these SUPERCOOL new ones. This one is the Under Armour-esque Asics long sleeve women's tech tee. Also in this order were long sleeve cotton tees and women's (non-t-back, which I need) singlets. Now, we're stylin'! Now, I'm hoping for a cold front for the back-to-back races this weekend.

Dumb baseball

Yet another player with an asterisk attached to all of his records. I got mad at baseball as a whole back in the 80s and continue to be disgusted. So, let's talk football, even though the season is over. As in the 2025 Green Bay Packers. Here's the starting offensive line, with my special teams coach (really all my nephews and my Dad at the ranch last weekend):

Thanks to Jenny and Tim for the picture I swiped from their website. Tim is currently driving from Oregon to Wisconsin with 2 crazy cats and a dog that kind of looks like a cat.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Back to Back Races

Since the last two weekends were back-to-back race-free, this weekend involves back-to-back races. On Friday night, I'll take on the Cupid nighttime trail 10k. Then, after a veggie burger and a beer (or two), I'll try the Bird Lover's 10k Saturday morning. Last time I ran the nighttime trail run as Los Chupacabras in July, I fell on my butt/hip and was hurting for the race the next morning. Last February, when I ran the Bird Lover's, I got an attack of some type of bird flu and was wheezing into the finish - and the very enthusiastic medics put me on oxygen. Those aren't very good omens but, alas, I will still try to complete both. Here's a picture from last year's Bird Lover's - before the bird flu.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Back to back race-free weekends

Well, last weekend, there weren't any local races, so I ran an easy 9-miler with buddies downtown. Afterward, I indulged in cheeeeeesy nachos at El Milagrito. This weekend, I would run the Stampede Rodeo 4 miler, but I will be out of town:

Yep, it's rodeo time in San Antonio again. They actually ran the cattle through downtown last weekend and the Spurs packed up for their rodeo roadtrip (their game floor is already covered in dirt). I never quite understood the joy of raising an animal to sell for slaughter, but I do crack up when the kiddos "mutton bust." Instead, I will be at Seeker Ranch, where they raise Brangus cows for slaughter (*sigh*), celebrating my grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary. Definitely more fun than a 4 miler!