Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Loser Trophy

The loooong Memorial weekend is over and we are just now recovered.  Ever stand around a pitch for 18 hours over two days in 90 degree heat?  Me want beer.  Me want beer right now.  But, according to societal mores, I’m supposed to stand there and drink freakin’ lemonade and watch kids play a sport and be a ”good example”.  Screw society.  Game #7 goes down much easier with a Schlitz.  My voice was raw and hoarse and my mean-spirited and completely inappropriate verbal attacks on the ref didn’t have quite the sharp vitriol it should have had without that Schlitz.  I feel like I cheated both myself and the ref.  We deserved better.

I didn’t run this past weekend.  I wanted to but we were all sun burnt to a crisp and dehydrated and, ultimately, collapsed on the floor of the house ten seconds after springing it open in a pile of empty Gatorade bottles, coolers, shin guards, and dried sweat.  I used my Asics as a pillow instead.

I know you’ve been anxiously awaiting news about how my kids BIG tournament soccer games went right?  Right?!?  Well, I’m going to tell you so grab a Schlitz and gather around the screen as Uncle Nitmos recaps my kids’ totally inappropriate weekend actions in a series of vignettes. 

Pimp Hand Strong

My filly loves the Will Ferrell movie Kicking & Screaming.  She loves to quote lines from it.  She tries to get her teammates to chant “Break someone’s clavicle!” as a pre-game team cheer.  Though she doesn’t understand the meaning, she also likes to quote “keep my pimp hand strong” – which she asked the coach before the game.

Coach:  Hey, ready to play?
Filly:  Are we going to keep our pimp hand strong this game?
Me, beaming with parental pride.

The Swan

They always talk about “form” being important in running.  It also has its place in soccer.  We captured the elusive soccer swan a couple of different times.  Shhh, here it is in all of its glory: (For all pictures, as always, click to prostate size)

These Colors Don’t Run
"Oh, no, they won't run onto the uniforms."

Yes they do.  Believe me.

Loser Trophy

Poor filly has inherited my competitiveness.   I blogged about being First Loser years ago.  Her team had an incredible tournament with a Goals For/Against of 19-6, a +13.  They won their first three matches 3-1, 4-2, and 10-0 to advance to the Championship match where they were downed by a more disciplined team 3-2 by a goal with a mere 4 minutes remaining.  Great tournament for them but, of course, my filly was displeased.  The team received a second place trophy for which she lovingly described as a “loser trophy”.  Here she paused in mid pout for a quick picture.  You might note the redness of the eyes...and the pink hair spray coloring on the front of the uniform.

I was also hyper competitive as a kid.  I’ve (mostly) grown out of that.  Hopefully, she’ll mature quicker.  As a perpetual non-winner, I’ve learned to appreciate the accomplishments of mediocrity.  In fact, if I win an age group award at a race, I’ve been known to parade it around the house, set it next to me at the dinner table and maybe (or maybe not, I’ll never tell) sleep with it at night.  Fourth place age group awards give the best bed.

Lesson:  Take the time to celebrate an accomplishment.

Her totals:  3 goals and 3-4 assists.

Calm the F*ck Down

My colt was also in action.  His team is missing a few pieces on the offensive end to make a strong championship push.  Like a boa, they just try to squeeze the life out of an opponent and then knock in a goal somewhere along the way.  They won and tied their first two matches, 2-0 and 0-0.  Until game #3 in the tournament, they were on a streak of 7 games where the only goal let in was the fluke slip n’ fall goal in well lubricated Ohio.  Finally, the ultimate champs knocked them out of the tourney with a decisive, scoreless game streak destroying  5-1 victory.

During that game, I was patting myself on the back again for my parenting skills.  My 14 year old, bless his soul, takes great delight in living the Roosevelt proverb, “Speak softly but carry a big stick.”  As left defender, he regularly crushes opponents and sends them spinning to the ground without a word no matter what is said to him.  However, a loud mouthed group of opposing parents was screaming uncontrollably about FOULS the entire game.  When my colt found himself in front of their group, he calmly looked over to the sideline like this…
Did you say something?
 …and said, “Why don’t you calm the fuck down.” 

Me, beaming with parental pride. 

Need help raising kids?  Give me a ring.

Happy trails.

Friday, May 25, 2012

One Mile Time Trial: Act Three

My wholly original One Mile Time Trial series is back for a pre-Memorial Day edition!  Don't take off for your long weekend until you read this post!

Before we get to the results, I want to point out what a fool I am (and not for the obvious reasons.)  The track has two drinking fountains near it.  I've run at this location for 10 years now and, every winter, they remove the piping under the fountain so it won't freeze and restore it around Spring Break for the outside sports teams to use again.  Except, this year, I did not see the piping return and I was brought to great sadness.  I would have no water for my harsh summer intervals unless I supplied it myself and I'm no J.D. Waterpockets.

But then I saw someone drinking from the inoperable fountain the other day.  Were they staging an elaborate joke on yours truly? No,no, they actually seemed to give off the satisfied glow of recent hydration.  And the chin was unmistakably glistening.  So I warily wandered over on guard for hidden cameras and someone shouting, "You got Punk'd!"  I depressed the button and a magical stream of looping water appeared before my very eyes.  It was a Memorial Day Miracle!

Apparently, they replaced the piping with internal flex lines this year.

As always, the "one mile" is really 1600 meters as in four laps at my local high school track - 30 feet short of an actual mile.  As explained before (i.e. horseshoes/hand grenades), close enough.  Don't argue.

Act one:  5:39
Act two:  5:38

The lungs and legs are starting to respond.  Instead of ridiculous Look-At-The-Fat-Guy-Run huffin' and puffin' I've been doing this Spring, I managed to maintain pretty good composure and form while making my orbits.  Laps of 1:22, 1:25, 1:25, 1:22 bringing an Act Three time of:


Still trending in the right direction!

But still a long ways to go to 5:20.

Happy trails.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Broccoli Starburst

There are some days when I’m in the mood for one of my notorious epic length blog posts.  This is not that day.  Here, one thought from the morning, in short form…

My filly can be very insightful when she’s not worrying about how big her nose is compared to the other 4th graders.  (It’s the year of body image for a growing girl.)  She’s consuming some fruit for breakfast this morning and matter-of-factly states, “Everybody likes fruit because it tastes good.  No one likes vegetables.  They don’t have broccoli flavored Starburst.”

True.  Starburst and Skittles both radiate their spectrum of rainbow colors and flavors trumpeting the sugary manufactured “fruitness” of their flavors.  I don’t remember seeing a vegetable in that spectrum.  Could the orange represent carrots?  How about red being a radish?  Dark green is green beans?  And light green is broccoli?  Can a fella get a yellow rutabaga in that rainbow?!?

Let’s face it.  No one “wanted a V8” despite what their commercials said.  It wasn’t until they came out with the V8 Fusion – adding the fruits and hiding the vegetables – that kids suddenly thought, okay, maybe I’ll have a V8 if I can’t get a Slurpee.  Notice how the picture on the bottle really pushes the vegetables….somewhere??

Vegetables are little anti-oxidant and energy powerhouses.  Athletes of all shapes, sizes and seriousness need lots of them.  That’s why I drink cabbage juice regularly.  And it ain’t easy to squeeze juice out of a cabbage.

I don’t subscribe to old axioms like “you are what you eat” because, frankly, I’ve never eaten an asshole yet I’m called that all of the time.  I do eat carrots constantly, which explains my orangish hue.  We need to find some way to package vegetables successfully the same way that fruit has been pushed. 

How about a Skittles garden pack?  Skittles: Taste the Garden.

Someone with more interest, get on that.  My filly is waiting for inspiration.

Happy Memorial Day!

It’s Memorial Weekend here in the U.S.!  You all can enjoy your hot dogs, potato salad, and beer.  We’ll be sitting around the pitch, along with 700 other teams, for the annual *near* end-of-the-year soccer tournament.  Should be nice….only 90 degrees!

Sadly, my colt’s shutout streak came to an end in Ohio in the wet, morning dew grass.  After 4 games – and nearly a 5th – the goalie slipped and fell on a fairly routine shot with 3 minutes to play to let in a goal.  It was Ohio (and it was an open field) so it very well could have been lubricant.  Either way, the shutout ended in a 1-1 tie. No 5th shutout in a row.

Meanwhile, the filly scored one goal and rattled another off the cross bar so hard that, if you listen closely, it is still humming a vibration to this day, in a 6-3 victory.

Rest assured, soccer ends in a few weeks and you'll hear no more about it...for a few weeks after that.

Friday, May 18, 2012

What I Learned During My Limbo Run

I don’t learn lessons real well.  I tend to be pig headed and try to bend reality to match my pre-determined world view.  It’s not a unique concept.  There’s an entire cable news network devoted to this.  It’s also why I’ve watched Toy Story 3 exactly 138 times (and counting) because, dammit, there is NO WAY Andy goes to college and gives away the toys.  (Note: Preceding sentence contains a spoiler alert.)  If I watch it again, he might change his mind.  It’s also why I drink so much beer.  I mean, in my mind, beer shouldn’t taste that delicious.  It’s not right.  So I keep opening another to see if this is the one that’ll taste horrible.  The search continues…

So I was pleasantly surprised to learn a new lesson on my limbo run on Thursday.  I thought I knew everything about limbo runs seeing as I invented the term.  To refresh, Tuesdays are my track intervals day and Thursday is a tempo run or limbo run, whatever the mood strikes as I lace ‘em up.  Long time F.M.S. readers know that a limbo run, known as a “progressive run” by the running glitterati, involves me running each mile progressively faster after starting with a comfortable warm-up mile.  Limbo run is a much more descriptive term than progressive run and I expect it to catch on like wildfire – eventually – in the running community.  Just remember where you heard it first.

A smart limbo runner gently accelerates through each mile.  You may drop 4-8 seconds per mile.  Heck, even one second gets you under the line for a successful limbo.  It would be nipple tickling but….it works!  If you go too low, too early, well, it just makes it harder for the subsequent miles.  Be a smart limboer.

As the original limboer, I’ve had some close calls but always managed to judge my pace enough to beat the previous mile.  But, yesterday, I almost knocked the bar over.

The plan was a 7 miles.  After a relaxed warm-up, I started my gentle downward sloping limbo:

7:14 –warm-up

So far, so good.   Miles 2-4 only saw an overall decrease of 5  seconds and, believe me, I noticed that I was limbo slacking a bit.  I prefer to knock off a nice 5 or 6 seconds per mile.  So I picked up the pace for mile 5 and found myself in the LDL Zone.


Oh, shit.  I dropped 28 seconds and, for the first time, found myself in the Limbo Death Leap (LDL).  I dropped too quickly, too much.  Like bad cholesterol, a high LDL is not a good thing to have. 

But press on I must:


Okay, let’s bring it home.


And done.  Against all odds, I limboed to keep my streak of needless braggadocio alive and well.   But Nitmos does what Nitmos does. (shrugs shoulders, feigns nonchalance)  I was tired and my mouth was dryer than a reused dryer sheet.  Truth be told, I ain’t in shape for that kind of limbo.  Give me a few more weeks.  If a DJ with a tenor voice smoothly chanted at me, “How looow, can you go?”, I would have responded, “6:09.  That’s it buddy.”  It wouldn’t have mattered how much – or how loud – the calypso drums or Hasselhoff played.

Lesson learned:  When limboing, don’t create a huge LDL or you’ll knock the bar down.

So I guess I can learn new things.  And maybe Andy won’t give away his toys and there’s a beer that doesn’t taste good. Run and learn.

Limbo wisely, my friends.

Happy trails.

Garmin don't lie:

7.0 miles
6:38 per mile

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Randumbery Assembles An Ass Line-Up

There are a lot of weird things going on lately.  It must be an election year.  Let’s get right into our random listing of dumb things….lovingly called Randumbery.

Have You Seen This…Ass?

Okay, minimalists, enough is enough.  First, the shoes are just too much and had to go.  Now things have carried to their inevitable conclusion: naked running.  That’s the agenda of all minimalist runners; don’t let them fool you.  They won’t rest until we are all running naked.  Just wait until McDougall comes out with his sequel to Born to Run - Born to Free Ball? - promoting the natural, centering, free gravity effects of running without shorts…that Big Pant has actually altered our natural waist movement and thrown off our natural running form.  Should be a hit.  Nike, Asics, Brooks, New balance, to your labs to create a lightweight, invisible, near nothing running short!*

In Colorado, home of hippies and intermittent slack bloggers, Carbondale is ground zero in the War on Minimalism.  Rampant packs of naked, trail running men have been spotted on hiking trails.  The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office has received several complaints.  Sheriff Lou Vallario has the situation under control. 
At a press conference yesterday, however, Sheriff Lou Vallario stated the naked men shouldn't deter outdoor enthusiasts from going about their business as usual.
"Be a little more aware, take some precautions... but you need to do what you enjoy in life,” said Sheriff Vallario in a Grand Junction Sentinel article.

Apparently, except running naked.  Right, Sheriff Lou?

Click the link and enjoy the descriptions of the four specific incidents cited.  Do you see something missing from those descriptions?  I know if I did some naked trail running, the first thing described to the police wouldn’t be my hair color or height but the size of…my their amazement.  (insert rim shot!)

Also, does one of these runners NOT sound like the others?  Note incident description #4.  It says nothing about running but maybe he’s taking a Gu break?  Can a fellow get a rim shot up in here?!?

There will be an ass line-up soon to identify this minimalist terrorist:

This is Colorado right?  Hey, has anyone seen Ian?
He must work out.

Had a Bad Run?  Eat More Sugar

Here’s another newsflash from some brainiacs at a sciencey place.  They’ve gone and studied more rats and projected their findings onto human beings again.  What they found this time is that “people who eat large amounts of sugar for as little as 6 weeks experience a sharp decline in learning and memory ability.” 
"Our findings illustrate that what you eat affects how you think," lead researcher Fernando Gomez-Pinilla said in a statement. "Eating a high-fructose diet over the long term alters your brain's ability to learn and remember information.”

The article didn’t specifically mention fudge stripe cookies and jelly beans so I don’t think I’m affected by this.  In fact, the article seems to be sponsoring a form of Sugar Minimalism which, I believe, is an offshoot of shoe minimalism and thus a part of the larger War on Minimalism.
Mmmm, little gobs of bite size goodness.

What does this have to do with running?  Well, first of all, it doesn’t have to do anything with running.  This is my blog and I can rant if I want to.  Second, there is, in fact, an important conclusion here for runners:  Eat lots of sugar and forget about how awful all that training is for the marathon.  At least, that’s my takeaway.  Jelly beans, start shivering in terror!  I figure I eat enough sugar and who remembers the calf cramp pain during that 20 miler?

Bikes 1, Genitalia 0

Another study from ‘The World is Round’ crowd.  This time they tell us that cycling leads to decreased genital sensation in women, numbness, poor sperm morphology in men, and erectile dysfunction.  They also ominously state that “female cyclists had less genital sensation than female runners.”  I didn’t know decreased genital sensation was a byproduct of running.  I guess that marathon medal you received has a double meaning, eh?  Congratulations, you finished the marathon!  And now your hooha is damaged!

I still ride a sweet 1998 Huffy Snakerock** but, let me tell you, I agree with these findings.  I lovingly refer to my Huffy as "The Eunuch Maker".

Just some more food for thought for you ardent cyclists or, as I now call you, Genital Minimalists.

Can We Make It Five?

You thought you were going the whole week without a Nitmos’ kids soccer update?  WRONG!  My colt will be invading northern Ohio this week to go for his 5th win in a row.  And 5th shut out in a row as well.  No kidding…their last four matches have ended in the following scores in order: 1-0, 2-0, 3-0, 4-0.  Anything other than 5-0 and we will not be pleased.  It shouldn’t be a problem as, again, he will be in Ohio.  I believe Ohio is known more for pay-for-play college football players rather than youth soccer.

But maybe he’ll get a tattoo while there.  We’ll bring an extra jersey to barter.

In the land where boys don't have blue faces.  But DESTROY 4-0!

And that’s how we do Randumbery.  Thanks for playing!

Expected retail:  $109
** Actual retail: $49 (Walmart, 1998)

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Only Good Llama

One of my meditation routines is to try to relax, contort myself in a sacrilegious way – called "The Perineum Tickler" - and come up with an appropriate conclusion to the meditation mantra, “The only good llama is…”

I can puzzle over this for hours.  I can puzzle over this until my perineum is sore.  So far, my best conclusions are: “…one spit-roasted and served over a bed of greens with steak fries.”  I also like “…one with its skull cleaned out and placed on the head of a staff as I stand over a pit of bleating, terrified llamas and ask them to slather the ointment on their skin or else they get the hose again.”

Admittedly, neither is real catchy.  That’s why it’s a good meditation mantra.   There’s no bad answer (as long as the llama ends up dead.)  But then I see this uplifting story of a llama given a prosthetic leg so that it could walk again.  T' hell?

Do you know how many hours I’ve spent devising this animals destruction to then have to suffer this “feel good” story?  The same people that made the prosthetic tail for Winter the dolphin (as seen in Dolphin Tale movie) are behind this.  Here I thought they were the good guys.   What do you call a llama with only three legs?  A good start. Or 3/4ths of a waste of space but getting better.  Or, one dinner down, three to go.  I imagine llama meat is very succulent and lean.  I hear their cold, dead black eyes taste like cherries.  Why aren’t we eating these animals?  Why aren’t we using their long necks for a line of llama neck bed lamps?  And what’s the deal with those necks?  It’s like a llama is a glued together donkey body on a half giraffe neck.  They should be called a Halfraffekey.

At the very least, let’s stop fitting them with cheetah striped fake limbs so they can walk again and continue their menacing existence.  We don't do that for a half smushed cockroach.

Next thing you know, the filthy beasts will want to run and race.  What do you do with a llama with a prosthetic limb?  It’ll be like Oscar Pistorius all over again.  Can he run in the regular Llamalympics or will he have to go in the Parallamalympics?*
No cheetah stripes.  A shame.
I might just be a little ornery today.  Due to a busy schedule and other personal reasons (possibly related to my meditation pose), I’ve been unable to run for 12 days.  It feels like 12 years.  I feel like I should be on The Biggest Loser.  It’s the longest non-running streak I’ve been on in over 6 years.  It’ll all come to an end tomorrow as I’ll be able to hit the road for several miles but, man, it’s been tough.  And then to see the whole MIRACLE WALKING LLAMA thing…

In the meantime, I’ve come up with an exciting and delicious recipe for roasted llama souls to share with you.  Best served with a fruity cabernet. 
  1. Kill 15 llamas and harvest their souls.
  2. Drink a fruity cabernet.
Feel free to use “The only good llama…” as a starter for your own meditation mantra.  Be careful, don’t get lost in the double ll’s – presumptuous beast, ohhh, I need TWO L’s in MY name because One.Won't. Do. – and split open your perineum.  You’ll be (theoretically) on the shelf for 12 days.

If the Hangar Clinic isn’t too busy working with the wonderful, can-do-no-wrong llamas, it'd be nice if they could come up with a prosthetic human perineum.  Don’t want to bother them with all of their useful and important llama work though.

Your turn.  Get into The Perineum Tickler and consider:  The Only Good Llama is….(fill in the rest)


Happy trails.

* Admit it, that was fun to say. 

Based on the poll results so far from my last post, the leader seems to be concern for my lack of fixing the lattice fencing pieces.  You would think that, with 12 days away from running, I’d get that done.  You’d be wrong.  And I see many of you are bashful about calling yourself a "race-ist" least in the comments.  Don't worry, I know who you are.  And, Danny, don't worry, I can't possibly drive any more readers from this blog.

Happy Birthday dear Nitwife!

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Are You a Serial Race-ist?

Are you a race-ist?  Are you one of those people that begin unintentionally race-ist sentences by saying “I’m not a race-ist but….” and then finishing it with “…I really want to run another 5k this weekend.”

Do you find yourself signing up for every Tom, Dick or Beardsley race in town?  5k’s, 10k’s, relays, walk-a-thons, costume runs, virtual runs, it doesn’t matter to you.  Admit it.  Some of you are serial race-ists.  You sign up for EVERYTHING.  I read blogs.  I know who you are.  You have more “race reports” in one calendar season than I’ve had in six years of blogging.    I’ve seen more photos of you with your head tilted to the side, mouth agape in a frozen WOO-HOO!  cliché camera cheer than pictures of my own kids playing soccer.

I’m not a race-ist.  In fact, I can barely match a race with the fingers on one hand during an entire year.  Usually, I have a few fingers left over.  Why are some of us serial race-ists and others barely notice things such as race?  Is it congenital?  Are non-race-ists inherently better people?*  Do race-ists need to diversify their hobbies?**  Am I just being jealous?***

For me, I’m kinda picky.  I’ve got to really want to run a race before I’ll sign up.  I might hear about one, check out the race website, and investigate the course and location.  I might let a year go by before the seedling sprouts into full blown desire.  Then I have to carefully count my dollar bills and triple-check the kids’ soccer schedule.  Maybe I check out the website 2-28 more times and then, if I still want to run it, I go ahead and register.  It’s an exhausting process - almost as exhausting as the training itself.  In fact, by the time I hit ‘submit’ on the registration, I feel like they should just mail me a medal and, let’s not kid ourselves, an age group award and we’ll skip the rest of it. 

I’ve never signed up for a race with less than two weeks prep time.  And I've only got as close as two weeks once and that was for a 5k.  Normally, I sign up for races 3-4 months in advance. 

In my area of the world, there’s a 5 or 10k seemingly every single weekend.  I’m often asked “Are you running the race this weekend?” and my response is usually something like, “No, what’s it for this time?  The VHS to DVD Low Income Transition Assistance 5k?” 

But some of you don’t seem to care what a race looks like.  Like a Pavlovian dog, you hear about a race and your legs automatically start trotting.   

There’s a 5k this weekend?  Ohhh, sign me up!
A costume run?  Honey, is my costume back from the cleaners?  Go get my moisture wicking pumpkin costume HOORAY!
A Sandwich 10k?  A Cupcake 5k?  An Ass Slapper 5 miler?  All good.  I’M IN.

Face it, you are a race-ist and it’s exhausting to the rest of us.  I know, I know:  Once you’ve gone weekly 5k, you never cease to pay race fees.  I’ve heard the ole race-ist saying a thousand times.  Now, I love to run.  I rarely miss a scheduled run.  I just don’t race that much.  I only race when I feel like I’m good and prepared and ready to give my best.  I don’t need to pay $25 and up for a half-ass effort.  I can just go out for a normal Sunday run and save myself the cash.  Who needs to eat rapidly browning bananas off a folding table at 8:30 AM?  Do Fig Newtons somehow taste edible after a race?  And who needs another race shirt? 

If you are not sure if you qualify as a race-ist, check yourself against these guidelines:

(1) You’ve run more than 10 races in a calendar year.  –or –
(2) You have more than 4 photos on your blog of you with a #1 pointy finger and a WOO-HOO! scream for the camera. – or 
(3) You entered a costume 5k dressed as a giant hot dog (or equivalent). – or –
(4) You considered playing the banjo during a marathon.

It’s time for self judgment.  Be honest.  I know it’s not easy to call yourself a race-ist but if the glove fits…

To be truthful, there’s part of me that would like to race more…to not care about PR’s and general preparedness…to acquire a sickening amount of race shirts.  But it’s hard to justify this when I’ve been staring at the same busted out piece of lattice fencing in my backyard for 4 years.  If I don’t have time to go to Home Depot and buy one 2x6 foot lattice replacement piece, can I really justify dressing up like a giant baby in a wicking bonnet and disgustingly real looking diaper for the local Kiwanis Club costume run?

Maybe a day will come when we’ll judge a race by its content rather than the color of its shirt.

Until then, I guess I’ll just live my racing through your seemingly weekly reports.  WOOO-HOOOO!  Just don’t move next door to me.  Race-ists drive my home value down.

Happy racing.


Monday, May 07, 2012

Anatomy of Annihilation

Yup, soccer weekend again!  For the 76th consecutive weekend!

The colt typically plays left defender though he moonlights as left forward.  Here, watch the action unfold as the colt, who relishes physical contact, blows up another attacking striker.  The colt finished the weekend with 2-0 and 3-0 victories making the third consecutive clean sheet for the defenders (and team).  Watch the action unfold as Momarazzi snaps away. (As usual, click to make like a prostate and enlarge.  My artwork is amazing.)

50/50 ball.  It sure looks like that striker would like to get it.  Does he want it bad enough?

Oh, no, here comes the defender.  I can haz ball?

Uh oh, Spaghetti-o's, I must practice my sense of balance for future match.  DEFENSE SMASH!
Annihilation. 3-0 win.  Lesson: Don't bring a rubber clavicle to a shoulder fight.
Meanwhile, the filly had to settle for a 2-2 tie against a clearly inferior opponent that packed the entire team into their defensive goal box (and then got lucky on the offensive end).  The filly attacked all game but couldn't break through.  No donuts for her this weekend.  Next time, Blue Face Group, your day will come!

Next:  Back to your regularly scheduled running nonsense!

Happy trails.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Grief Bacon

There are very few times in life when Meredith Viera can teach you something useful so, when those times occur, you must pay attention, sit still, and learn well.  It’s a moment that arises only occasionally like Haley’s comet or a clever quip from Ryan Seacrest.  A month or so ago, while watching the last few minutes of Who Wants To Be a Millionaire (don’t ask me why and, yes, it is still on the air), a question about the definition of the German word “kummerspeck” came up.  The dramatic music and flashing lights centered on the contestant but they might as well have been directed at me sitting on my couch in my onesie (hey, they are still comfortable – don’t judge) and eating a bag of Cheetos.  I had to know this word.

Kummerspeck!  I didn’t care what it meant; this was going to become part of my regular vocabulary.  I’d make room for it by getting rid of “irregardless”.  Irregardless isn’t a word.  It’s just “regardless” and it’s one of my pet peeves when people say “irregardless”.  Since I don’t say “irregardless” – again, because it isn’t a word – it would be easy to jettison.   I have room for exactly 20,124 words in my vocabulary no matter how useful some of them are to me.*

Here’s the best part:  Kummerspeck paid off with an even more awesome definition!

Composed of Kummer (“grief”) and Speck (“bacon”).
Kummerspeck m. (genitive singular Kummerspecks)
  1. (uncountable) Excess weight gained due to emotional overeating.
Retrieved from ""

Are you FREAKING kidding me?  GRIEF BACON?!?  Jackpot!  If you thought I had a blog post written two seconds after seeing this and before I could wipe four orange finger stripes across my onesie, you’d be correct!

Grief bacon still tastes delicious!
I snuck the use of kummerspeck into my last post.  Twice.  I was fishing for any recognition.  Viper latched right on like, well, a snake with fangs.  B.O.B. exhibited less patience and just came right out and asked.

You know how in movies they show a jilted lover grabbing a pint of Ben & Jerry’s to comfort themselves?  Kummerspecking!  Or on The Biggest Loser a contestant – or eight – have the sad story about an injury or a family death that caused inactivity, depression, overeating and rapid weight gain?  Grief bacon!  Kummerspeck! 

I love the word and you’ll see it deployed often in the future on this blog so learn it now.

However, truth be told, I do take a small issue with its construction.  Grief.  Bacon.  These are two words that don’t really belong together.  If I were to word cloud these words, grief is sad, unhappy, melancholy, sullen.  Bacon is delicious, happy, food group, and orgasmic.  Therefore, grief bacon is an oxymoron.  It seems almost criminal to associate bacon with something sad.  Bacon is what a PR tastes like if it had a flavor.  Bacon is like an age group award.  Heck, bacon would be a wonderful age group award.  In fact, a big plate of bacon would make me skip the race entirely.  But would I be kummerspecking?  Not according to the big greasy smile on my face.

Grief bacon is like saying ‘holocaust hors d’oeuvres’ or ‘cremation candy’ or ‘Budweiser beer’ – a horrible thing matched with a delicious thing.

Plus, why should a depressed fatty get sole use of this super cool word?

From now on, I’m considering any successful run, any PR, any age group award, ANY happy occasion to be a freudigenspeck.  There, I've created a new word for you.  Bacon should associate with a celebration.  In kummerspeck, it’s running with the wrong crowd.

You can kummerspeck over a DNF or a ripped hamstring or you can freudigenspeck your bacon-flavored PR.  It’s your classic bacon is half empty vs. half full philosophy.

For once, I was thankful for Meredith Viera and WWTBAM irregardless how ridiculous the show can be.  Without it, would I know to suggest that the eviscerated soccer team from this past weekend was engaging in kummerspecking?  And would I be able to use it in a blog post so that you may learn it too?  No.  And that would make me a kummernitmos.**


I also have an issue with Alzheimer’s disease.  I mean, the disease is bad enough but how hard is it to say – and remember – "Alzheimer’s"?  My boss continually says “Old Timers” when she means “Alzheimers”, as in ‘I forgot the data for the presentation today – must be my Old Timers kicking in!’ Har Har.  Fortunately my exasperated sigh is disguised by the lame chuckles from the brown nosing employees.  It’s ALZHEIMER’S and you sound like a fool when you say “Old Timers’. /endofrant

**Das ist, was sie sagte!