16 March, 2014

Expensive Trip

Category: Annoyances,Driving,Geek,Stress,Stuff — Moose @ 9:02 am

Was on the way to the not-so-local comic shop that the boy has adopted when the back passenger tire decided to start making Very Loud Noises. Seems the thing had finally decided enough was enough and it was time for tire replacements. Visited a couple of places, everywhere had to order tires for the poor mini (none had them in stock), so we limped to the comic shop (thankfully I have a car-lighter-powered air pump in the car, so we were able to inflate the tires a couple of times), then to BJs where we ordered tires to be done some time this week. Had a bit of fun there trying to get a coupon printed off their web site ($70 off the set, so was worth the aggravation), ended up having to track down the boy’s zip code from three-plus living places ago to get into the site, but eventually got in and got the coupon. Shopped some at regular BJs, though not as much as we might have otherwise, then off to an auto parts store for some fix-a-flat. That seemed to work pretty well for the ride home, and I picked up an extra can to keep with the other emergency stuff in the back. But definitely the most expensive car trip I’ve taken in a while.

28 June, 2011


Category: Adult,Annoyances,Dating,Driving,Family — Moose @ 8:59 pm

Went to see the family this past weekend. And I do mean the whole family – it was my one surviving grandmother’s 90th birthday, and most of the cousins and all the aunts & uncles were there. Was good to see people, but getting stuck in traffic set off a lot of resentment I’ve been holding in with regard to dealing with my family. It boils down to the fact that I always go see them, they never come up here to visit. Big huge city full of free museums, great restaurants, and a successful attorney willing to buy a lot of good meals, and my parents have been up exactly once, when I made them come get me and drag me to a triathlon back in 2006. Ugh. So, yeah, I was screaming at traffic and family and generally getting a lot of that out of my system while in the car.

So of course I’m dragging the boy down to meet them this upcoming weekend. Ha. At least, I think I am. We’re making tentative plans to go down and visit the beach, since the parentals make for a convenient free place to stay down near Va Beach. And since I’d like them to meet him, and he couldn’t come down this past weekend (trial by fire, that would’ve been!) because he was up visiting his own family in another long planned trip. Final details to be planned out, but it’s been cleared with the parentals, so it’s more likely than not.

21 December, 2009


Category: Driving,Exercise,Games,Racing,Weather — Moose @ 2:38 pm

Spent the last three days of Snowpocalypse 2009 playing the last of the three games in the Metroid Prime Trilogy, finally defeating the last three bosses (on the 2nd try) a little bit ago. While I’d originally planned to do a run, I suspect it’s still a bit too icy out there to run on the roads/sidewalks, so it looks to be a day on the bike trainer in the living room. Not thrilling, but I’m glad to have the option.

The snow was lovely, and I’ve yet to venture out into it because, frankly, snow is best (to me) from a distance. Preferable a few thousand miles of distance, but hey. I wasn’t upset at the extra day off today (OPM shut down the federal government here in DC to give the localities another day to dig us all out, plus Metro’s not yet running full steam, or wasn’t as of last night). Since I’ve stayed in I’ve been giving my face a break from shaving, proving again why I don’t grow a full beard (I can’t; the right side doesn’t grow in completely). I think I’ll keep it until tomorrow morning, letting the skin have another full day’s break from the scraping. Periodically ice and snow will fall off the apartments above me, or be pushed off, and the noise is jarring. The more regular drip of melting balconies hits the windowsill in my bedroom every now and again as the building heats up.

Glad this happened this weekend and not next weekend. The drive up to Pittsburgh is going to be taxing enough as it is without adding ice and snow to the mix. I was disappointed that I didn’t get to run up in Baltimore Saturday, but there was no way I was taking a mini cooper on I-95 in “blizzard” conditions.

12 November, 2009


Category: Club,Dating,Driving,Shopping,Stuff,Travel,Triathlon,Weather — Moose @ 12:04 am

I’m currently sitting in my parents’ motor home, listening to the remnants of Hurricane Ida blowing past. Every now and again a particularly strong blast of wind manages to shake the coach back and forth. Reminds me of a camping trip we took when I was little and we had to flee into the vehicle we’d driven up in because the tent was literally about to be blown over by the wind that night. That’s not a concern here, obviously, but it is a bit disconcerting when your “home” rocks with the wind.

Completely forgot to bring any snacks, or Adult Tang, so I think I’ll be shopping tomorrow rather than this weekend. While I’m out in the wilds of Virginia I find it a good opportunity to hit stores I wouldn’t normally get to, or get things that it’s easier to haul home in the car rather than attempt to carry home via the Metro. If I can get out, that is. There’s more than a bit of flooding going on here, which made the drive down interesting once the sun set.

I got to spend the past two weekends with Mike – I went up for Halloween in Salem with him, and then he came down this past weekend for Code and a visit. We continue to talk nightly, and haven’t managed to run out of things to talk about. I head back up in early December to see him next, and visit Provincetown for the first time.

I’m thinking of taking a CPR course in late December. It would be good to know just in general, and also for my continuing work with our New Triathlete Program with my tri club. I’m trying to get myself back into “triathlon” mode, picking up literature I need to go over both for NTP and for my own training, and reinvesting myself back into a training mode that I’ve been out of since September’s race.

13 May, 2009


Category: Driving,Exercise,Lists,Running,Sleep,Swimming,Triathlon — Moose @ 10:47 pm

Did a final push tonight to ensure I can do Columbia on Sunday. Swam a little over a mile (3×500 as the main set, with about a minute rest between each), got home, changed, zipped out for a run of about six and a half miles (a little more than what I’ll be doing Sunday, though on flat and not hills like Columbia will be). Not bad, though I predict I will be a bit sore tomorrow. If nothing else there’ll be a small blister on the left foot from the new orthoses. I think next week will be time for new shoes, too. And hey, should sleep nicely tonight.

I got a pretty nasty little sunburn on Sunday while driving back from Tidewater. It’s fading, and isn’t quite as red as it was on Monday. I keep slathering it with aftersun lotion (and sunscreen when I go out), and no peeling, either. Yay moisturizer. Made an appointment for early June to get the mini’s AC fixed so I won’t do that to myself again.

I want to spend some time next week going through my uberlist for this year. Some things have been completed, and some have changed or been rendered moot. And it’s time for a review, after getting through this first race.

9 May, 2009

Family Visit

Category: Body,Dating,Driving,Family,Health,Shopping,Stress,Stuff,Triathlon — Moose @ 7:25 pm

What is it about traveling that always throws my system off? My hands are covered in eczema from something, likely the stress of travel and not drinking nearly enough water. Driving a ton more today, down to North Carolina to visit my grandparents and back, probably didn’t help any.

The family is doing okay, and it’s been a pleasant visit all told. My brother didn’t make it down with the younger two nieces, but I did get to see the eldest niece and give her a hard time (as well as an antique pendant for her birthday). Picked up a set of mid-century import china I’ve had my eyes on for the past 3-4 years now (dragons!), and I’m also hauling back a mounted set of moose antlers from my grandfather (a moose he evidently hunted himself in Canada some many, many years ago). Where I’m going to hang the antlers is a whole other question, but at least they fit in the back of the mini to haul back to DC. Going to have to figure out how to clean and preserve them, too – they’re a tad dusty and dry from years in an attic.

Managed to avoid having to plant walnut trees by delaying the trip until mother’s day. Sneaky, but smart. Though I’ve also missed the last good weekend to get in long training before the race next Sunday. So, I’ll just have to wing it on the 17th. I know how to do it, I know I can do all three events separately, and I’ve done this race before, so I’ll finish, but it ain’t gonna be pretty.

Had some fun on the dating front, but I’m not going into it yet. Too early to tell where it’s going, if anywhere, so aside from noting that something is happening, I’m going to leave it at that.

26 January, 2009

Exhausticated, For A Friend

Category: Driving,Friends,Knitting,Sleep — Moose @ 11:32 pm

Got a random text from a friend this afternoon asking if I could do him a favor. He wasn’t feeling well, and needed to go to urgent care after work (both to get looked at, and to get a doctor’s excuse so he could stay home – yay stupid HR policies). Said yes, of course, skipping my swim workout and heading down to the wilds of Alexandria. Left home around 6, just got back in now (post-11pm).

I’m a wee bit tired.

Got him checked out, he’s got some non-specific bug that tested out as bacterial, so we got him some antibiotics, some dinner (at almost 10 – we were both pretty darned hungry by then), then I got him home, walking him up and making sure he got a fever reducer in him before I left.

On the upside, since I figured any “after hours” visit to a doctor (read: urgent care center) would involve a waiting room of some sort, I came prepared and managed to knit about 3 more inches onto the leg of a sock I’m working on (bringing the total on it to 5 inches [out of 8 planned], more than doubling the length while I waited). Yes, we were there that long. But at least I managed to be semi-productive while we/I waited.

Very glad I could help, but tomorrow is going to draaaaaaaaaaaag.

27 May, 2008

Exactly What I Needed

Category: Driving,Family,Games,Knitting,Stuff — Moose @ 6:16 pm

Had a really nice Memorial Day weekend. I zipped down to see my parents and my brother and his family. The drives both ways were relatively relaxed, and I was able to keep the mini on cruise control at a reasonable speed for most of them (which very much helped my gas mileage – not quite 38 mpg each way). I’ve started going down to Petersburg and cutting over on 460 to 64 rather than taking 64 down the Peninsula, and I find it a much more pleasant drive. The Peninsula always drives me nuts with it’s constant construction (I’m not kidding – they’ve been widening or fixing or doing something on that damned highway since before I learned how to drive; I hate driving there). Picked up the eldest niece on the way in and had fun scandalizing her with bad singing to Madonna. Fun times.

The parents are doing well, as is my brother (aside from meds-related weight gain, that is). Took the brother to get his belated birthday gift – running shoes. Poor guy has my feet (which is to say, flatter than the proverbial pancake), so got the exact same shoes I wear. They were on sale (yay!) at the local running store, so he got a top and socks, too. He’ll have to find his own shorts. Now I just have to find a 5k for us to do down there this November to get him going.

Past the shoe shopping trip, it was an utterly unscripted weekend. We had no need to be anywhere, no race to do, etc., so we did projects around the yard (or, rather, they did projects and I watched and/or entertained my nieces). And that had to be the best part of it – just hanging out with my family and getting a chance to just be together, without the need to be running hither and yon on someone else’s schedule.

Went through Mom’s knitting stuff. Didn’t steal any of her needles (though she has all these nice old aluminium ones which were tempting), but did take a lovely 1941 “Knit for Defense” booklet with some relatively easy patterns in it (sweaters, gloves, socks – stuff “for the troops”). Copied a couple other easy patterns on their copier/fax/scanner/printer/coffee maker/nail gun/etc. machine. Might try the baby hat pattern before I do BC’s hat, just to get in some practice. Part of the just hanging out included a ton of knitting on the scarf, with the result that I have a couple more hours and it should be done finally. It’s looking pretty good, now that I have a better idea what I’m doing.

Not a lot went on past that. Some gaming on the eldest niece’s Wii with her and my brother. A couple of movies and other bad television. Planting flowers and putting up the blueberry bushes’ bird netting. All in all the perfect little vacation, and exactly what I needed.

11 May, 2008


Category: BC,Cooking,Driving,Exercise,Games,Racing,Swimming,Triathlon — Moose @ 9:55 pm

Prescription goggles seem to be a hit or miss proposition. Most of them at my approximate prescription are fine, but the one which listed itself merely as “strong” and a pretty broad range of prescriptions seems pretty damned useless. With the others I can see, even on land, almost as well as with my glasses. These, well, might as well be regular goggles for all the good they do. Which is, of course, why I ordered multiple pairs to try them out, both for vision and for fit. Two more to try tomorrow (excluding the bad ones). I really liked the first ones, so these have a lot to live up to.

Spent some time adding people to the Wii and the two games there (see my LJ for the codes). BC and I spent most of yesterday together, over at his place. Bought some Birkenstocks so I have shoes to wear inside the house, as well as outside for pre-race/post-race wear. Damned podiatrist and his sensible orders not to go barefoot. Not pleased with it, but wearing them inside does seem to be helping. Which is even more annoying, that he was right, and that walking around barefoot inside was somehow a bad thing. Blasted flat feet. Did the mom’s day brunch thing with BC’s family. Came home mid-afternoon in the rain (ugh), played some, made some dinner & lunches for the next couple of days. Just chatting and being a bum here tonight before I crash.

Have to take the Mini in at some point. It’s got this neat trick where if I accelerate too quickly, the run-flat tires’ pressure sensor thinks the tires have just gone down by more than 10% pressure, so the warning light cuts on, which then cuts out the ABS brakes and several other lights come on, the car dings at me, and it’s altogether incredible annoying. I know it’s not that the tires are actually going flat, because Dad gave me a plug-in pump that I’ve checked them all with. So it’s a bad sensor. Grrr. It did manage not to do the trick until I got onto the bridge over the Potomac on the way home this evening, thankfully.

Of course, I mention this to Dad and his reaction was to tell me about the other trick it has of cutting off the AC if you accelerate too quickly with the AC on. That, thankfully, resets when you stop the car and turn off the engine, but not until then. Gotta love it when your car’s computer has to reboot itself.

Anyway, off to bed so I can run & swim tomorrow. Taper week, with the race next Sunday, but it’s still got to be done.

8 March, 2008

Long, Productive Day

Category: BC,Driving,Exercise,Health,Knitting — Moose @ 8:18 pm

Started the day relatively early, at least early for me these days. After an early breakfast and putzing around the house, I hauled myself up to upper NorthWhite Northwest DC to get myself tested. Specifically, I was getting a VO2Max test. This involved getting a Hannibal Lector-esque mask strapped over my nose and mouth and then running myself ragged.

It actually isn’t as bad as it sounds. They just strap you in, hook you up to a detector, then start you walking at a moderate pace on a treadmill. The pace picks up until you get to a preset one (set by the tester after talking about your pace), then they start increasing the incline. All of this happens slowly over the course of 15 minutes, until you get up to your upper limits, which I presume they could tell by the VO2 feedback. I hit 200 beats per minute before we went into cooldown mode.

I’ve not gotten the full results back yet (they’re being emailed to me), but the tester did confirm something which I’d suspected for several years now – I burn high when it comes to heart rate in exercise. I look forward to seeing what the tests show for where my heart rates are supposed to be now, as it’ll help me train more intelligently. I’ve wanted to do one of these tests for a while, but the timing never worked before now. I’m planning to follow up with another test in a month to see how training affects the numbers.

And it was wonderful getting to run after a full month down from the vertigo, even to that level of effort. Perhaps especially to that level of effort.

After coming home to clean up I zipped out to my local yarn shop to pick up some longer circular needles for the scarf I’m working on (the 16″ was getting annoying – kept catching on the cable). Their selection waxes and wanes, so I picked up several pair while I was at it, for future projects. Switching the scarf over was easily done, and the longer cable’s been much easier to knit with. Not quite halfway done with the first skein. Posted a pic on Flickr today of the progress as of this afternoon when I updated the status over on Ravelry.

Haven’t seen much of BC lately. He’s dealing with his company’s annual audit this past week and next (plus all the prep the week before last). Headed out to the movies with him tomorrow, after a run in the afternoon, I hope. Depends on his work load, but it should work. I just picked up an EZ-Pass for the mini, so I don’t have to keep popping change on the toll road to get out to his place. His parents have accepted an offer on some property to turn into a winery, and he’s going to purchase their house from them, so for the foreseeable future I’ll be driving to Herndon on a semi-regular basis. The EZ-Pass just makes it that much easier to get out there.

One last appointment with the podiatrist in a week, then I should be cleared entirely from his care, which is the last bit of anything going on. The plantar fasciitis is gone, and has been gone for several weeks now, but this is just one last appointment to milk my insurance company ensure it’s well and truly 100% gone. Until then I can still run, so that starts up tomorrow with BC, and then swimming again come Monday. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that this was it, because the long-term goal is focused on the IM now.