Today I ran in a 10 mile race in Chapel Hill. It was a warm spring morning with 100% percent humidity. The course was very hilly — it is called Chapel Hill after all — including a mile long hill near that end of the race with its own timing pads. As I was finishing the race, I spotted a large puddle leftover from the night before’s rain. I was already drenched with sweat, including my shoes. The puddle was 10 yards from the finish line and I was pushing myself to finish strong. The child-like part of my brain took over and rather than avoid puddle, I jumped in the air and came down as hard as I could with both feet in the puddle. I didn’t even pay attention to who got splashed or what their reaction might have been. I just continued my sprint to the finish line.
I ran through a warm swath of air. When this happens in the ocean you usually think someone has peed there. But when it happens in the air, it is just a change in temperature and humidity in a very localized area. Cold air makes you think of spirits, but hot air is just a weather occurrence. It’s not very descriptive or interesting. It was a very distinctive feeling though.
I am a grown man. I am dating a grown woman. We have both been married, divorced, had kids. And there is still something a bit disconcerting about meeting her parents. We were having a pleasant conversation, but that little voice in the back of my head says, “Yes, sir, I am dating your daughter.”
The 1990s are calling and they want their headline back. Panera has a sign promoting their number that accepts fax orders. I should have asked about it, but instead I just decided to write about it. You can buy a fax machine for about $60, but I really don’t know what you would use it for. Besides your Panera order. I did find a Fax Machine Buying Guide from about a year ago. It basically said don’t buy a fax machine.
Today I updated my Facebook relationship status. For many people this is no big deal, but it was for me. I joined Facebook after I was divorced, and I’ve never had the opportunity to change it from blank. I never said divorced, or even single. It now says in a relationship, but with no details. Edit from the Future: And it is blank again.
We have been together for a couple of months and it was finally time to meet the family. Picture a big Italian family. And Easter. What could possibly go wrong? Actually it was a fun day that began with brunch (which included bagels and lox, not in my honor), followed by an Easter Egg hunt for lots of kids of all ages, and finally homemade pizza at her parents’ house. Everyone seemed to be impressed with my stamina to last the whole day, but it was just a long social occasion. And nobody was that crazy. I even got two thumbs up from her very Italian mom.
I made two simple meals recently. Spaghetti with garlic and oil and matzoh brei. My girlfriend, who is Italian, is really good at recommending simple things for us to eat, especially before going out to a show, as we did last night. I am still trying to impress her with my cooking prowess, but she’s more practical. Pasta does not get any easier. Chop and sauté garlic, then pour it over al dente pasta. Add a little more olive oil and a bit of oregano. Serve. This has a feel of a family dish. This is nothing fancy and you would never make this for company. Matzoh brei is easily described as matzoh french toast, but that doesn’t do it justice. The matzoh is broken up, soaked in egg, and fried. Again, this is a simple family meal that is steeped in tradition. And delicious.
We have conversations every day about things we’ve read, listened to, or just encountered in our daily lives. One of the easiest ways to share these with others is to take a page from the audio world of podcasts, which provides a show notes page associated with every episode. This is a list of links to the things discussed in the show, so listeners can learn more and explore these topics on their own. In my life these show notes often take the form of follow-up emails.
As our current president may be forcing out his Strategy Director, he claimed, “I am my own strategist.” Proper strategy requires gathering information from a variety of sources, processing that information by thinking through the details based on past experience, and presenting these results as strategic guidance to what should be done. He does not display the skills nor temperament to be a strategist, especially for someone as volatile as the current president.
United had some recent trouble with an overbooked flight and a request for “volunteers” to give up their seat. I don’t need to provide a link to the video of a passenger being dragged off the plane because you have likely seen in it. Maybe on Facebook. Maybe on your favorite morning news show. Chances are pretty good that even if you didn’t actually see it, then you heard about it. This was a mass media moment in the age of niche media and filter bubbles. I was on a plane the next day and when the flight attendant announced their request for volunteers on an overbooked flight, nearly everyone turned to their neighbor and began talking about the United incident.