What The End of a Day Should Bring.

    Anyone with a 1 year old (or any young kid) knows, days can be hard.  Every move, every decision, and 90% of the time you have each day belongs to maintaining whatever routine you have developed to keep your kid healthy and as happy as possible.

    Joanna Goddard posted a blog a last week that I really loved.  Something I’ve thought about every day since Amelia was born is her future.  Not really long term (although that’s obviously important as well,) but more short term things; rights of passage stuff.  In the article she writes about kids going off to school, finally being on their own around other kids who may or may not play nicely.  Thinking about how your kid may have moments where they feel sad or alone.  Watching Amelia smile with genuine excitement when its time to brush her teeth, or seeing how excited she gets when I chase her into her tee pee-the thought of her being sad about anything that isn’t related to a temper tantrum is indeed heartbreaking.  Basically the point of her post was that in the end, you want to make home the one place that is guaranteed to be safe and warm, or in her own words – “a haven.”

   Having read this, it made me think.  Not only was this true, but it should be that way for the whole family.  I work at home, so I’m here all day.  My wife however is not.  Like most folks, she endures the morning commute, the traffic, the weather, and every other outside element in her life that is stacked upon her shoulders.  All while toting a baby to and from my parent’s house.

   I try to make sure that dinner is ready when they get home everyday because the baby usually only has a short amount of time left awake before its time to go to bed.  It’s usually the same routine.  I get a text when they are leaving my parent’s house which in turn, allows me to properly time dinner.  Usually a dinner that is quick and easy, lacks any effort, and that can be whipped up mindlessly.  That’s fine most of the time.  We don’t have much time to go out for nice dinners, usually once every 1 or 2 months if we can get my parents to watch Amelia.  In an attempt to create a nice surprise for them, tonight I will be making a delicious dinner from a recipe I found online.  I will also create an intimate, candle-lit table setting for my ladies. A glass of wine for my wife, and a sippy cup full of the finest water provided by our fridge for the beautiful Amelia Rose.

    As a man, it’s easy to fall into a trap of taking thing for granted or to fall into a routine.  Some routines are unavoidable, especially during the week.  A simple tweak and a little thought can easily bring a smile to the faces you love, especially after a long day.

    Tonight I will be making 3 Vegetable Penne Pasta, which uses wheat pasta but I am being assured by the great Rachael Ray that there is a reason having to do with the combination of flavors and not just calorie cutting.

    Another thing, clean up a bit.  Not just in the house.  Yourself.  Take a look in the mirror.  Yeah, its sometimes more comfortable wearing old jeans, a t-shirt, and ball cap, but change it up.  Put on something nice.  Not over the top.  Just nice.

    In the end you have 2 people coming home who have been gone all day, tired, strung out, and itching to get into something comfortable to relax.  Part of the fun in having a little kid, is surprising them.  Sure, she doesn’t know what a candle light dinner is…but she knows it wasn’t like normal dinner, and we certainly don’t light fancy candles!  She seemed to love it and had two whole plates of pasta with nothing but grins.  I love my family.

My Fantasy Football Experiment

    I’m a pretty big football fan and a die hard fan of the Buffalo Bills.  Every year I have the chance to join someone’s fantasy league but never really wanted to try it.  I had never done it and it always seemed like a pain in the ass.  This year I decided to do it, except I decided to try something different.  First off, this was a free league with nothing more than “bragging rights” for the prize.  Fine with me.  All this meant was that I was free to be as crazy as I wanted to be.

   
    The draft was the most fun.  You had the predictable choices go first in the beginning rounds…but I decided to be ridiculous.  Or was I?  I didn’t understand the logic of picking random players from different teams.  So what if they are the best players.  I looked at the Buffalo Bills roster this year.  The defense was looking great, the offense has impressive weapons with two starting running backs, and the quarterback (at the time) was supposed to be decent.  So in my eyes, EJ Manuel is either going to pass it to his two top receivers, or to his 2 running backs….and if hes not passing it to them, they will be running the ball with those two running backs.  Its almost double the points every play!  Right!?  The people I ran this by before the draft laughed at me…but nobody really told me “why” it wouldn’t work.  The only drawback I saw was the bye week.  My goal was to make the playoffs with this method, so sacrificing the bye week was something I was willing to do.

   Of course I kept this a secret from everyone in the league accept my friend Pat who was pretty excited to see how this would work as well (although laughed at it as being ridiculous.)  I had my draft board laid out, 6 overall pick, and determined to get all my players.

My first pick:
C.J. Spiller

I figured, out of all my players, he would be first to go if someone where to take a Bill.

My second round pick:
Sammy Watkins

He has gotten so much hype in the off season, I didn’t want to chance losing him/  I wasn’t really worried about losing Manuel at this point.  I figured I could snag him in the 3rd round (like the Bills probably could have done…)

My third round pick:
EJ Manuel

My fourth round pick:
The Buffalo Defense

In the end I got everything I wanted:

EJ Manuel
Robert Woods
C.J. Spiller
Fred Jackson
Scott Chandler
Mike Williams
Buffalo Defense

Backups for bye week:
Ryan Fitzpatrick
Brian Hartline
Mark Ingram
Delaine Walker
DeAndre Hopkins

The Bye week will be tough to get through, my best shot at points is Fitzpatrick because he doesn’t have to win, he just needs to get me those garbage stats hes known for.

So how have I done?  I’m 2-2.  I should be 3-1.  I lost the first week by only a few points because I forgot a player when setting my line up.  I didn’t know “w/r/t” was basically an extra player to use.  What was once a laughing stock during the draft…is now raising eyebrows.  Nobody wants to lose to my team.  Nobody.

Cool Addition to Our Daughter’s Room

    As a kid I always had a wild imagination.  Whether it was playing with my action figures while involving them in a continuing storyline or acting in imaginary movies, both activities I would do by myself in my room.  If someone where to have filmed me, I’m sure it would have been embarrassingly hilarious.  As ridiculous as it was, I feel today that it was healthy and helped me grow to be creative as an adult.  We had video games growing up, I had my Nintendo/Sega.  I didn’t really give a shit about any of them. 

   I wanted Amelia to have a room that would hopefully spark her imagination.  I wanted a room that she would want to play in.  Nicole and I started brainstorming this room even before she was born.  This newest addition was something she had come up with that really put the final touch on her bedroom.

A freakin’ Tee Pee with a little fake animal skinned rug!  We got this on amazon for $130.00, I was able to use my amazon points and got it half off.  They have it in 2 sizes, we opted for the 6 ft size which was the smaller.  It fit perfectly.

Her face is always priceless when I show her something new.  This was no different, and for a little while she wouldn’t go in it.  She just looked at it.  Eventually I convinced her to go in by going in it myself with her favorite book, “Harry the Dirty Dog.”  She followed me in and seemed to like it.

    The quality of this thing is really nice.  The reviews on Amazon from everybody had said it was nice quality, but that it had a gross fishy smell.  It actually didn’t at all.  Maybe they fixed the issue.  I’ll have more pictures of her room once we finish the clouds that we want to paint on the wall.

Fan Expo Canada Bound! (I’m not sure if I’m excited.)

I consider myself a comic geek, although at the age of 35, I have to curb by buying habits to not look like a total asshole.  I have a baby and a wife, so instead of buying the Punisher first appearance, Spiderman Issue #129, I’ll make a home repair or maybe throw some money in my baby daughters starter account.  But on occasion, I do pick up a few issues still hear and there.  I also love sci-fi and Doctor Who.  With being a fan of all these things, one would think that I must attend geek festivals and cons, left and right.  I actually don’t.  At the end of August, I will be heading up to Toronto for “Fan Expo”, the biggest event I will have attended, and also, only the second.
   My first experience at one of these things was at the Niagara Falls Comic-con.  I was pretty excited to go to this event.  There was going to be a few guests that I found interesting, one being Mic Foley (whom I’ve always been a huge fan of) and Cory Feldman (that’s right, Corey Feldman.)  I have gone to see Foley at other wrestling related appearances, so I wasn’t too excited to see him, but it would have been cool to get my “Stand By Me” DVD signed by Corey Feldman.  We arrived on time to this event, where we were surrounded by people in costumes in the parking lot.  It was neat to see.  We then approached the Niagara Falls Convention Center only to find ourselves standing in a gigantic line because the building was at capacity.  This is an absurd notion if you are selling tickets to something.  I was pretty annoyed from the start.  After about an hour, we found ourselves close to the entrance.  Anytime now!  All of a sudden, flocks of nerds started running out of the line at full speed to the other side of the building.  We stood there wondering what had just happened, only caring slightly as we felt that at any moment, we would be inside.  One of the door guys casually came out and said, “Oh hey guys, the line has moved to the other side. We are closing this entrance.”

Looking across the parking lot at the other side of the building, the new line appeared…..even bigger than it was before.  After another hour of standing around, we had finally made it inside.
What to do first!?  A casual stroll was in order to browse the vendors, see some people, etc.  So much is for sale at these things!  I started to see the celebrities set up their tables, and the lines started to form to see them.  Corey Feldman’s line was huge. I immediately gave up on that, and headed over to Foley’s line.  It was reasonable, and I had a copy of his first fictional book, “Tatum Brown” that I wanted to get signed.  I was in line for about 30 minutes, when I was told that it was about $80.00 to get this signed (I could be off a little. but by no more than 10 or 15 bucks.)  Cash only.  Fucking Cash only.  What if you wanted to meet 2 people and buy some comics.  You’re supposed to stroll around with hundreds of dollars cash in your pocket like “Joe Bucks?”  It’s insane!  At this point, I’m determined to accomplish something.  The person behind me offered to hold my place in line so that I could go to the ATM machine around the corner.  I stood there, in line, again….waiting for my turn at the ATM.  The guy in front of me looked as though someone he knew had just died.  Then he filled me in.  The ATM was out of money.  The ATM….was out of money…..

So I quit.  I grabbed the $20.00 in my pocket, bought a Doctor Who shirt and left that shit-hole, never intending on going back for future events.
   Toronto Fan Expo, is supposed to be the real deal.  Huge lineup of guests, one being Patrick Stewart whom I would love to meet.  According to the Internet, the event drew 100,000 people last year.  At the moment, this very moment, I am excited.  I’m sure it will remain that way, up until I realize that Patrick Stewart will want an absurd amount of money, or I get stuck in some gigantic line…..or the ATM runs out of money.  Regardless, I will keep my head up…

I’ll at least walk out with a T-Shirt.

C25K Conclusion!

    I had posted blogs on my experience with the C25K app for smart phone.  Basically in a nutshell, I was diagnosed with very high cholesterol by my doctor and after convincing her to give me 6 months to change and avoid medication, I started the C25K program the next day.  Well, the 6 months have passed.  I combined this running program with weight watchers (another program I’ve had great success with) for 6 straight months, going from barely being able to run a mile, to being able to run 8 miles, all while going from 206 pounds down to 182 pounds.  I didn’t want to go on medication.  The doctor said that having cholesterol that high could have been “hereditary.”  I have a huge issue with “hereditary,” mainly because (for the most part), it’s overused.  Sure, some things are.  But some things are bullshit.  Like when cancer runs in the family, and then you notice at a mass family gathering, everyone is outside smoking.  Or, cholesterol problems run in the family, but everyone is out of shape, doesn’t exercise, and doesn’t take care of themselves.  This isn’t a direct correlation to my family, (well the smoking part was, I had noticed it at a family holiday party).  My step-dad has higher cholesterol and isn’t in bad shape, but he doesn’t really work out.  I had to find out for myself: “Did I really just have a problem with my cholesterol, or did I just need to bust some ass?”   I know some people need to be on medication for cholesterol for whatever reason, but I was not about to give in that easy at the age of 35.  
     Tuesday at 5:30pm was judgment day for me.  The final chapter in my 6 month workout saga.  I brought my wife and daughter with me, we got into the car and drove to the doctor’s office.  The doctor came in with my numbers.  I went from a total cholesterol level of 265 to 219.  About 19 points away from being in the “normal” range.  She said that she had never seen someone pull that off in 6 months (she’s younger) and was super impressed.  Everything else she said at the moment is a blur.  I was so happy and so blown away that I was just focused on my wife and little baby, thinking about how much I loved them both.  They are the soul motivation for my drive, the air in my lungs.  So not only did I miss a bunch of what the doctor was saying (all good stuff according to my wife) but I was basically trying not to cry like a huge pussy.  It’s weird.  I guess you have to have a kid to know the feeling, but you see this little version of you sitting there, looking at you in amazement every second it’s awake, and you just want to do everything you can to be there for her.  In my case, it was staying alive.  I didn’t want to have heart problems because of sky high cholesterol.  I want to see this kid do karate or play soccer.  I want to be there for every milestone.  If it means I have to go running every other day for miles and miles, and eat healthy, than god dammit, I’ll do it!  I just did.




Grilled Pizza! Goat Cheese Chorizo Pizza.

   In my 35 years of existence, I have worked in a ton of pizza places.  I consider myself a master.  I do.  It’s the one thing I make and make well.  This week I decided to try making a grilled pizza.  I had read about this method before, but I always put it off in fear of making a big, doughy, shitty mess.  This time, I was going to go balls out.
    The recipe this idea originated from was called, “Sausage and Fig Pizza.”

My wife and I love goat cheese, so I decided to give this a shot (even though I’m not nuts about figs.)  I went to our local pretentious market for ingedients and immediately ran into the annoying problem of not being able to find fresh figs.  I was instantly pissed.  I grabbed some dried figs because I’m not the smartest when it comes to figs.  My wife told me when I returned home with them, that it would be terrible and not work.  That killed me. So I scrapped the figs (happily.)
    I changed the recipe.  We were no longer going to use figs, I was no longer using fontina cheese, and I was going to be using chorizo sausage.  These were the new ingredients I picked up.

Chorizo Sausage
Italian Blend Shredded Cheese
Arugala
Goat Cheese
Red Onion
Minced Garlic
Pizza Dough

I never make my own pizza dough, there are too many places around that make decent dough to just buy and take home.  I grabbed a ball of white pizza dough and headed home to make this delicious pie.
 I had a few problems with the recipe, but basically, I still followed the beginning steps when starting the dough.

  
You want to take the dough and “pound it out” or if you aren’t skilled in the art of pizza, take your rolling pin and roll out your dough.  Normally when I pound out pizza dough, I use corn meal.  For this technique, you want to sprinkle flower down instead of corn meal.  Don’t go crazy, use just enough so your dough doesn’t stick and so that it slides around.  After your circle is made, you lather one side of the dough in olive oil.  I spruced it up by taking a little dish and mixing some minced garlic in with the olive oil and then brushing the dough until one side was totally coated.
    Next, you want to fire up your grill and let it get to about 300 degrees.  It helps if you have a grill with 4 burners.  I fired up 3 of the burners for this part of the recipe.  Now, the first part of the recipe is dead on.  When making pizza, you want to make sure you have enough flour on the spatula or cookie sheet so that your dough slides off easily.  You want to take your dough and place it on the hot side of the grill, oil side down.  Make sure the grates are oiled nicely as well.  You want to leave the dough on the grill for 4 minutes.  I found this to be the perfect time.  You can peel up the dough slightly to check on it, to make sure it’s not burning, but it should be fine.  While this side is cooking, I took my little dish of olive oil and garlic and used that to brush on the opposite side.  After the 4 minutes, you then flip the dough and cook the other side.  This side is to cook for only 2 minutes!  This will be the side that our toppings will go on.  After the 2 minutes are up, take the dough off the grill and place it on a rimless cookie sheet, or a pizza spatula if you have one.  Shut off the third burner.  We only want two burners cranking now and the other side of the grill we want off.

4 minutes on one side…

2 minutes on the other.  Look at that crust…”shit just got real.”

So now we have our pizza crust off the grill and ready to top.  This part is simple.  Take your chorizo sausages and squeeze out the meat from the casing.  break it down into tiny little chunks and sprinkle it all over the pizza.  I used two sausages.  Next, take your arugala, red onion, and goat cheese and spread it all over as well.  You then take your Italian cheese blend, and put your preferred amount over the top.  You really don’t need to go crazy, the goat cheese is what you want to taste here, the Italian cheese is just going to hold everything together.  Then do a drizzle of olive oil over the top of everything. Bring the pizza back out to the grill and place it on the “cool” side of the grill.  This is where the recipe is totally wrong.  The recipe says that it should finish cooking in about 4 minutes.  This is not true.  You are not going to get the sausage cooked in 4 minutes.  It ends up being more like 8-10 minutes.  Basically the pizza sits on the cool side of the grill, while the other half is cranked up, the lid is closed and the pizza bakes in the grill at about 380-400 degrees.  Check your pizza once in a while to make sure that the edge closest to the burners isn’t burning.  I’d rotate the pizza every few minutes as well to ensure a nice, even cook.  Once the sausage is cooked, the cheese should be melted as well, and you are finished!

Sprinkle on the final cheese and olive oil and bring it out to the grill.

Looking good…

…real good…

Slice it up and dish it out!  Order up!

This pizza was delicious and one of the best I’ve made.  Grilling pizza gives the pizza a taste that the pizza stones can’t cut.  I’m not sure if I can even go back to cooking pizzas in the oven.  Let me know how you made out!

Cheers!

Let the Summer Activities Begin: Larkin Square Food Truck Tuesdays

   There is so much to do in Buffalo when the good weather hits.  One of the newer things to do is Food Truck Tuesday at Larkin Square.  This city has a plethora of food trucks now, and they all get together on Tuesdays in what was like a mini taste of Buffalo.  If you haven’t been to Larkin Square, its impressive.  An area of what was once just old warehouses, is being turned into something really cool.  Larkin Square now hosts events on different days of the week basically offering folks a chance to come down, have a beer, and hang out.  It seems to get nicer and nicer each year.

taken from larkinsquare.com
As you can see there is a ton to choose from!  When we got there, Nicole made a bee-line to the Betty Crockski truck for perogies and sausage (pretty much her favorite food).  This was one of the newer trucks that we hadn’t had a chance to try.

    Nicole said the food was average, not terrible, not amazing. I didn’t get a chance to try a bite of hers because when I returned from grabbing a beer, she was finished with it.  Speaking of beer, there isn’t much variety, but I was able to have the Rusty Chain from Flying Bison which I’m not all that fond of, but I’ll drink it if I have to.
    It was time for me to choose something to eat.  I couldn’t go crazy and try a bunch of things due to my diet, but I was going to indulge in something tasty.  I decided to go with, “Le Petit Poutine” from Rochester.

I wasn’t really a fan of it.  I like my Poutine to have delicious melted cheese, this was served with chucks of curd which isn’t really my favorite.  The portion was decent, but it was basically a $10.00 container of fries and gravy.  Mine had pulled pork on it, but not much.  $10.00 was high in comparison to the other trucks.
    The covered area of Larkin Square is loaded with comfortable places to sit, but every spot was taken.  There is a stage where performers do their thing.  When we were there, there were break dancers which was sort of lame, but they get all kinds of acts there.
    Overall, I highly suggest checking this out on a Thursday.  Its easy to park, its easy to get around because its nice and spread out, and its a good opportunity to kick back and try some food.

Memorial Day Weekend!

   Hopefully everyone is having a great long weekend.  I’m not sure where everyone else lives that is reading this, but here in Buffalo, NY it is fantastic outside.  Memorial Day always ends up being the welcoming of great weather and other awesome things.  Yesterday was one of the first days where I got to really enjoy an entire day of activities with my daughter.  Maybe that sounds odd…I guess what I’m trying to say, is that it was one of the first days that we were able to go hang out around the city with Amelia, where I was confident she was having a really good time.  Like you can take a new baby and go out somewhere, but its not the same as when the baby gets to be that age where you can see that she is reacting to the environment around her, showing signs of “having fun”, smiling at people, seeing new things.  It was really awesome.
    We started off first thing in the morning with a trip to the Elmwood/Bidwell farmer’s market.  It occurs every Saturday in the park starting around mid May.  If you ever visit the city and are here on a Saturday, its worth going to.  The market is loaded with flowers and plants, baked goods, wine, beer, cheese, salsa, free range meats and produce from local farms.  All being sold in the beautiful Bidwell Park, in the heart of the Elmwood Village.  For this activity we used the stroller with Amelia as it would serve us well for stroage.

My wife snatching up some rhubarb for a delicious pie.
We walked out of the Farmer’s Market with pork chops, flowers for our garden, 2 growlers of beer, and some rhubarb.  The entire time, the baby was all smiles, taking in everything.  We headed home with our stuff and the baby took her little nap. 
    Once Amelia woke up, she had her lunch, then it was back to the village for a coffee.  This time we changed it up, and used the device where I basically wear the baby.  During her nap I went and ran 8 miles, I didn’t take that into consideration when I strapped 20+ pounds onto my chest for another stroll around town.  It was painful, but enjoyable.  Of course our trip out for coffee was immediately altered by the food truck party that seemed to be happening.  One awesome thing about our city, is that we have a plethora of food trucks that serve top notch food.  I’m not talking about those shitty pickup trucks that drive from work site to work site selling terrible instant foods that you get at a gas station.  These are straight up mobile kitchens with restaurant caliber food.  Its pretty awesome.  We decided to go with the mac and cheese truck, “Fally Mac.”
Check out the menu:
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Mac & Cheese:


The Plain Jane Plain mac and parmesan crumbs, classic.


Oh Gee Mac N’ Chee! Enjoy hot sauce on mac? Try this out.


Summer Roll Mac (vegan) Sweet and spicy thai flavors.


Beef & Weck Mac Like the sandwich, you’ll love the mac.


Green Apple Mac Sharp cheddar, tart apples, yummy times.


Pink Lobster Mac Made with love –oh, and of course lobster.


Not Mac & Cheese:


Thai Basil Tomato Soup: Tomato soup with a tasty twist.


Edamame Succotash: Sufferin’ succotash, this stuffs good!


Meatloaf on Ciabatta: A classic homemade favorite, now grilled.

We both went with the Beef & Weck Mac.  Nicole had actually gotten it the last time we saw the truck and it was delicious.  This time, it was just as delicious, but a little watery.  We did however choose prime lunch time and the truck had a line of people around it. It was really busy.  No complaints though, it was delicious.

Full speed ahead with this little baby!
I love this kid.
Waiting for some mac and cheese.

After the mac and cheese, we grabbed some coffee and headed home.  Again, another outing where the baby had a great time out and about, no issues!  We went home, did some playing, and she went down for another nap.  When she woke up, we did more playing, fed her some dinner and decided to test our luck.  The Dinosaur BBQ had recently opened their Buffalo location, and we had yet to pay it a visit.  It’s hard when you have a little one.  We decided to call up our two friends to meet us out and headed down.  This was going to be a true test because we would be arriving at the Dinosaur at around 5.  Amelia’s bedtime is usually around 6:30-7pm.  The closer you get, the more unpleasant she becomes. When we arrived, we were sat instantly.  Amelia was having the best time.  She thought she was the coolest.  We would be taking, and you would look over and she would be just looking at you with a huge shit eating grin on her face, leaning back, totally cool.

The day ended up being fantastic!  An entire day just hanging out with me wife and kid.  I enjoyed every second of it.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Follow me on Instagram @supersweetshrts

Prentious Product Review: "Harry’s Razors"

   I have not done a blog in quite some time, mainly because I barely have time to breathe.  I have returned to do a review on a product I bought listening to an ad on a podcast that I listen to.  I’ve seen similar companies advertised, like “Dollar Shave Club”, but that to me always sounded like a lower quality product.  It might be great, who knows? I just know that, for me, it came across as a cheap product from the advertising.  So for my entire life, I’ve used “Gillette” Razors.  Occasionally when I didn’t feel like draining my wallet buying them, I would go and get the knock off brands, which were still expensive, but not THAT expensive, and they aren’t very good.
   When I heard the ad for “Harry’s”, it came across as a great product.  A classy advertisement, about this blue collar razor company making a great product at a lower cost.  Plus at the time, I had a coupon code that got me a free 4 pack of razors, which if they were “Gillette”, would have cost me $12.49 at the store.  So I went onto “Harrys.com” and read a little about the company.

3

    Pretty much when I saw this, I knew I had to try it out.  This guy looks awesome, and the company looked awesome.  The website is incredibly well done and loaded with information on the product.  The pricing, even better.  If you go online, I’m sure you will find a coupon code to use, but basically this is what I got.

One of these packs of razors was free with the coupon code.

The packaging was super impressive!  The product was attractive and slick.  I was really impressed.  The shave? Terrific!  I found that I barely had to push down on the razor.  My beard hair is intense.  This razor mowed through it like a knife in warm butter. 
    So what was the cost of this? The handle was $10.00 which comes with one razor.  They allow you to choose from a variety of colors.  They also have more expensive handles ranging from $10.00-$35.00.  The blades start at $8.00 for a 4 pack, and then get lower (cost per blade) the more you buy.  The best part?  Free shipping.  Straight up.  Harry’s rules.  When I first ordered these, my wife rolled her eyes and said “pretentious”….. Is it? Maybe? Or is it just flat out smart.

Yeah……smart.

Cheers!

The Quest to Better Myself Continues….

   Today I ran my first 5K race since becoming healthy.  I used the Couch to 5k program which over 9 weeks got me running over 3 miles at a time.  This was going to be my first test to see if the training had paid off.  I had been running longer than 9 weeks, so i didn’t just finish the program or anything like that.  The actual results were not posted yet but I think I roughly hit about 8:45 per mile.  It felt great to not only complete the run, but to aggressively try for my best time.
   Another thing I have started doing is reading.  I know the way I just phrased that sounds a bit ridiculous.  What I meant was, I started reading things that matter.  Normally if I sat down to bury my face in a book, it would be non-fiction or science fiction.  One night I was laying in bed reading “Reamde” by Neil Stephenson, when I started thinking about my baby daughter.  You know that thing that happens when your reading a paragraph, and at the same time your thinking about something totally unrelated, and your actually not absorbing anything that you’re reading because of it?  It was one of those.  I was thinking about classic literature and how when I was in high school and in college, I never read any of it.  It was assigned, and I would basically find a way to cheat, or find some way to get around reading it.  And I was good…..I could make anyone believe I read anything.  Looking back on it, I was kind of filled with regret.  Not only did I feel regret, but I suddenly had this urge to just start taking in everything I could think of.  Like a cyborg.  In my head I created a mental list of books that I wanted to read as soon as possible, Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”, Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises” and “The Old Man and the Sea”, Keuroac’s “On the Road” – it occurred to me that I hadn’t really read anything that actually mattered.  I wanted to be able to one day talk about books like these with my daughter.  It’s crazy what having a kid does to you.  It has an effect that I can’t really describe.  All I can say is that it makes you want to become the best you can be as a person and as time passes, the more I watch her grow, the more drive it gives me to be the best I can be.  A sappy blog entry, but the truth.

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