Monday, May 30, 2011

New career move

So I've left everyone in suspense here as to my new career move. Since I'm in a big period of transition, trying to figure things out, still unemployed, etc., I figure this is as good of a time as any to try something new. That statement is ironic as 3 or more years ago, I would have negated and shunned that thought all together. After all, we are creatures of habit and ritual.

I have decided to attend bartending school. And yes, you really can become a professional bartender, licensed and all. I checked the local school here which is accredited, established, and seems like a nice place to learn. The school only lasts 2 weeks for four hours/day. The schedule is flexible, coming in either in the morning, at night, or on the weekend. Upon graduation, you become licensed in all 50 states. This school will also help you with job placement here or any of their other affiliated schools across the country.

I met with the enrollment person last week and took a tour. It's a nice set up as it simulates what an average bar looks like--all 200+ bottles. It is a bit daunting at first, but I think just like everything there is a learning curve, and then you get it. Plus, it is really helpful that I tend to have a good memory.

In talking with this person, I learned a few interesting things. One question I was curious about was how many people who enrolled who were not drinkers. She said about 80% of people were non-drinkers, and quite a few of them had never had any drinks at all. I, myself, am not a big drinker, though have tried various mixed drinks--sex on the beaches, daiquiris, fuzzy navels, mai tais, long island iced teas, cosmopolitans, some blue drink which I think was a blue hawaiian. This person considered me a "sponge." LOL

Many are asking why would I even choose bartending. Well, for a variety of reasons actually. One, the money which is mostly tips can be good if you are doing your job right. This is also dependent on where you are working. For me, I'd only be choosing upscale, nice places. I do not want to have to deal with off-the-wall drinkers who only drink to get drunk, and then do some stupid stuff. In general, nicer places will also have a different clientele who will order more sophisticated drinks.

Two, the hours can be flexible depending on where you work. And truly, I do want to have some kind of life outside of just work. Also, this type of career tends to be stable. If you think about it, it's like eating,. Generally speaking, people have a tendency to eat by emotions--sad or happy, etc. The same is with drinking.

Three, I think this could be a good way to challenge myself out of my comfort zone. I'm typically a shy person, don't necessarily talk much until I get to know you, but always friendly. I know for a fact that I will always be on the reserved side, that I will never be your typical social butterfly. But, if I can teach myself to in a way to "be on" when I need to be, I think it will give me more confidence in the long run. Even the enrollment girl I was talking to picked up on this, and said she could imagine me being chatty with someone. Truly, that's part of bartending. Sure, part of it may be that you make good drinks, but what gets people coming back is you and your personality.

I also know for a fact that I'd be a very ethical bartender. I could never live with myself if something ever happened to someone, knowing I could have prevented it. This place helps you in dealing with customer service and situations where people have had too much.

I start class tomorrow. It feels a bit weird going into a classroom again with a pen, paper, index cards, and a highlighter. I'm hoping it will be worth it. I kind of look at bartending as cooking. There is some science and art to it--a basic recipe and then your added touches with presentation. I'll keep everyone posted how it goes.

p.s.--This idea ironically came from my father, you know the one who has been telling me for years to go back to school. I never would have thought he would have said this though. He also told me about someone he knew that was a bartender in New York, making $1,000 in tips/night. Being in the midwest, that will likely not happen.

p.p.s--In some ways, it still feels odd thinking about this profession, but at this point I do need to think financially here. And I'm having a hard time to catch any breaks on the job front.

Exhausting but fun week

I've been recovering for the last two days and trying to catch up on everything from this past week. For whatever reason, I'm having a difficult time with this, feeling lethargic and a little unmotivated frankly. Things are getting done, just not at the speed which I'd like.

With the exception of many thunderstorms, lack of sleep from Hank being worried, and likely getting my physical therapist in trouble (was supposed to have a follow up Rx for PT and never did...whoops!) , this was a splendid week! The highlight was the clicker clinic where I got a chance to work with several dog trainers from Belgium! Although the Belgian dog trainers had a specialty in bite sport work (think attack dog, aka Schutzhund and Ringsport like Mondio Ringsport, French Ring, Belgian Ring, etc.), it was cool to be able to apply some of their techniques to the scent work I am working on with Tovah.

You do not know how nervous I was actually participating in the clinic. This was Tovah's first experience in a workshop setting, and I was so worried that she would not focus at all or she wouldn't do anything I said she does. Plus, I was in front of some top notch trainers and my peers too. My confidence level is just not there yet.

However, with saying all this, Tovah and I did really well. I was quite pleased with how she did. The Belgian trainers liked Tovah and thought she did well too. One thing that the Belgian trainers did which I felt was really nice was allow me to work on something completely different from the others. They knew this ahead of time (I was specifically wanting help with Tovah's alert to cadaver odor), but still they didn't have to actually split the room for me or wait until all the bite sport work dogs were finished. They could have just said the hell with it and left you know. But they didn't. We tried once to work on Tovah's scent discrimination, but she was too distracted by the barking, whistling, tugging that was going on on the other side of the room. Bite sport work is pretty darn exciting!

Guy (Ghee), one of the Belgian trainers, just waited until the bite sport work dogs were finished. I brought Tovah back out and she did just as I had described. We worked with her and now I have a new way to try to help her with her alert. Guy said he knows this will work. He felt very confident that she would get it, and that I was clever enough to figure out how.

At the end of the day which concluded with a Thai restaurant and talking until midnight (it's very interesting t osee how European dog training is different from American), Guy gave me his business card. He said I could e-mail or ask any questions, and he would reply back. My heart just warmed with this. It is very cool that little ole me now has a dog training contact in Belgium! Plus, Guy reminded me of a big old teddy bear, and every time he said "good," it reminded me of some kind of Russian gymnastics coach or the likes of Bela Karolyi. LOL Seriously though, I think these moments get to me, because I still have not been able to let go of that "deserving" concept, or that my dog training skills are "good enough."

Anyway, I got back at 2am the next day and was exhausted! Ever since, I've just been trying to play catch up with house stuff, planting flowers, mowing, running (missed my long run this week), reading, blogging, dog training, and dum dum dum gearing up for my new career move, part-time for now at least. I promise to write about that soon. Most people would never ever think of me in this profession.

Off to bed, tomorrow's a long day.

Hope everyone has a nice Memorial Day and stays safe.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

5k race results

First off, my apologies, there are no pictures. I seriously need to start putting a note on my forehead to remember my camera! By the time I did, I was on the interstate which was down to one lane. I was afraid of being late or not finding parking. I should have gone back and gotten it, because I got there in plenty of time with lots of parking still available. Oh well, next time, I will remember. Ya'll can keep me to that. ;-) I also forgot Tovah's harness, so I had to run her on her collar. :-(

I think there was a total of 700+ racers. There were a lot of dogs of various sizes, breeds, and mixes who showed up--some ran, some walked, and some just came to watch. I did see a small dog in a doggie stroller, though I don't think she ran. There were a good number of kids as well, and they had a fun run dash after the race was over.

The race itself went okay. IMO, 10 AM is too late to start a race even if it a short one, especially if you have dogs. My guess is that it 73-74 degrees which is hot for running, but on the plus side, it was not raining. The race was a little disorganized. We were all by the start line, and the announcer had a megaphone but no one could hear with all the talking. Then, suddenly I hear "on your mark, get set, go" and the gun goes off. People to the left and right of me were like "oh, we're starting now." But needless to say we were off.

Tovah was ramped to go the first 1 1/2 miles, and we were ahead in the dog/runner division. But then, Tovah was not speeding up, and I had a hard time getting her to go faster. Where was a squirrel or bird when I needed them?

I saw another dog/runner duo, and we were running side by side at one point. She was a basketball player and just running to stay in shape. Her Boxer was with her, not sure if he ran much though, and not in that warm weather for sure. Anyway, she pulled and ahead and won in the dog/runner division by 23 seconds, and we came in second.

It was a bit funny after the race, because the officials had come to me asking if I was the first dog/runner duo to finish. I could have easily lied you know, but that's not me of course. I told them it was the girl with the brindle Boxer. They eventually found her, and she got her medal.

When I looked at the results later, surprisingly, we were running a faster pace than I thought, so though there was no medal winning for us, it was still a good race. The male and female winners were booking it as were the runners running with strollers. I didn't think this was quite fair, because it was all men! In real life, how many of us actually see men running with kids in their strollers?

I met up with a girl from the running group, and we walked around the vendors and gabbed a bit. I told her my latest career or at least temporary job thoughts which she thought was cool. I will share that in the next post.

Overall, Tovah did pretty well with the other dogs. There was still a little snarking, but she wasn't the only one per se. I was proud of myself for only having one dog trainer moment. There was a guy who had his dog's harness on completely ass-backwards. It was very unsafe. I went up and told the guy nicely, it was backwards and not fitted correctly. He really did not seem to have a clue. Now, whether he will change the harness or not is anyone's guess, but at least he's aware.

So that is the race report for the OTR 5k. There are some more 5k and 10k races coming up which I may do, but still debating. I'll likely be doing a fall marathon, so am starting that training process. One thing for sure is that I've got to acclimate my body to warm temperatures. For whatever reason, it seems much tougher this time around. Like everything else, it's just about getting yourself out there, albeit safely, well hydrated, and nourished of course. :-)

ps.--In a bizarre fashion here, I was looking back over the results, and there is a name that looks strangely familiar--a girl from my college chemistry class. I'm almost positive it is her, and the age is about right. I have no way of contacting her though :-( This was a girl who used to beat me on every chemistry test (I really sucked at chemistry anyway), despite the fact I was helping her! And of course yet again, she beat me by 4 seconds. It's a friendly rivalry though.

pps--if I find any pics from the race, I'll post them.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Tomorrow--a 5k race

On a whim, I decided to register for a 5k race. There are actually a lot around here, and normally, I do not do 5k races, feeling like they are just too short of a distance. However, this one that is tomorrow caught my eye, because they are allowing dogs and giving a medal to the first runner/dog duo to cross the finish line. I did find it funny that they wrote in parentheses that the dog must run, meaning no doggie strollers. They are also giving a medal to the first person and stroller with baby in stroller to cross the finish line.

This will be Tovah's and my first official 5k race. I'm a bit worried about how many dogs might be there. Tovah is great with dogs as long as she has seen them before. It's the new/strange dogs she "shouts" out. I'm hoping they will not be very distracting for her, and she'll just run with me as always. I have every bit of confidence it is all bluff for her as she has never harmed a dog at all. Still though, I do not want to distress anyone else, or for them to say, "WTH did that girl bring the obnoxious, barking dog?" It's moments like this when I don't want to say I'm a dog trainer, but then again, dog trainers have a tendency to take problem cases (not that I constitute Tovah as one). It's called the "Dog Trainer's Trainer's Syndrome.

I'll post how it goes.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Let's talk about teeth!

Today's topic is teeth. Yeah, I know, I've talked about it before on here. But I think it is one of the neglected parts of our bodies we talk about with eating disorders. And let's face it realistically, many of the symptoms, ie starving, purging, chewing/spitting, etc. can all cause some major teeth damage. It's only been fairly recently that we've realized how early dentists can pick up on the preliminary effects of an eating disorder, though I'm still not sure how much it is discussed in general (for one, none of my dentists ever said anything, I had to tell them)

For those off you who don't know my story, I was bulimic for many years. For over a decade now, I've had some numerous teeth problems, costing thousands of dollars, no joke! It is sadly probably one of the permanent damages from my eating disorder. Currently, I need like 3 or 4 implants and a bridge replaced. No fun, everyone. It sucks to lose your teeth to harsh, violating acts you have done on your body.

So here's the thing. Though logically I knew my teeth damage was likely permanent, I did have some hope I could reverse part of the damage or at least keep it at bay by not purging which I kicked when I began my "true" recovery about 2 1/2 years ago (gosh, it has been hard to believe it has been that long) For me, training for the marathon that year (2008) was part of the impetus to end that bittersweet love affair. There have been some other complications with that, but that is another story for another day.

A few weeks ago, I had a dental appointment. This was for a general cleaning (last time, they just did a light cleaning due to some "pockets") and to have 3 cavities filled. Yes 3! Prior to this, I didn't have any indications other than some slight tenderness to coldness. There hasn't been any purging in a long time, there was no major killer infection or toothache this time, yet still, I was surprised to have 3 cavities! I also have an irritation where one of my teeth was extracted, but my dentist said she could not find anything. It's annoying knowing that something is causing that irritation but not to have a reason.

In some wrong assumption (you know where logic fails you), I had thought that once I stopped purging, all my teeth problems would be resolved. I had felt that just like I was taking care of my body, I was also taking care of my teeth in the same way. I brushed, flossed (okay, this could be better), rarely drank soda or carbonated beverages, etc., but problems still arose. Don't get me wrong, I have far less trouble with my teeth than before, but it is still a reminder that I must be vigilant about them. And that, yes, I will likely always have some susceptibility to teeth problems.

So people, the take home message is don't forget about your teeth! You may not think you are doing damage now, but this like other symptoms of an ED can be lasting and permanent. This certainly doesn't mean that if you have teeth damage, then the hell with it, there is no hope. But rather, be vigilant, remind yourself that you only have your teeth once, so just like the rest of your body, they are important to take care of. (there's only been a very few people that I've known who could actually grow teeth!) Go see your dentist! Just like you would see a medical doctor, therapist, psychiatrist, or dietitian/nutritionist, your dentist is important too!

Okay, I'm done for my spiel of the day. :-)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Breaking down the Big Top

The Cirque du Soleil gig has now ended. It was an interesting experience for the most part. Being an usher was not that difficult, but I still found myself feeling worried about not being perfect which happened on more than a few occasions. Since the amount of shifts you worked depended on your performance, it was obvious to see I was not one of the stand out people. It's okay though, my heart wasn't broken, especially since I did pick up a few shifts this past week.

Overall, I'd say that I met the goals I had: to meet some new people and to do something different. There was a diverse group of people there--some had lost jobs, simply didn't have a job (this was the majority) others were supplementing their income, and others wanted to be Cirque "followers." Followers are people who follow Cirque from city to city, as long as they are approved to come. They get paid more and obtain more hours, but still, they have to provide their travel and housing expenses, at least in the beginning. My impression was that as you got higher up on the hierarchy chain, the more Cirque would paid for you. One example was a guy who was just out of the army a few years ago and joined Cirque for temporary work. He went onto follow them, and now manages one of the sections of food and beverage for this show. Now, Cirque covers most of his expenses. So for Cirque, there is a lot to be said for working hard.

I met another guy who was also an usher whose eventual hope is to audition to be a trapeze artist. He said he saw Cirque when he was 6 or so and decided he wanted to do that when he was older. He did gymnastics and self taught himself trapeze. Another guy actually got offered a position to work in lighting.

There were a few things I learned in the process too:
  • I could never work a second shift type job. It isn't the hours per se, but I dislike feeling like I miss out on a lot of normal people's life. Usually, by the time I got home, I was pretty beat and fell asleep fairly quickly. Then, my mornings were spent with e-mails, phone calls, job searching, etc., and then it would be time to leave for Cirque again in the early afternoon.
  • A second-type shift also affects my eating schedule. Sure, I'd probably adapt if I had to do this everyday, but on a temporary basis, it isn't my style.
  • Standing for long periods of time even in good shoes is definitely hard on my back and hip. I noticed on days when I did not have to work, these body parts felt significantly better.
  • I think if I had to wear black every single day, I'd go neurotic with worrying about dog hair on my clothes.
  • I do not think I could live the artist or Cirquador (that's what we were called) type lifestyle. It isn't so much the traveling that would be hard, but it would be difficult on my animals. If I had only one animal, that might be easier. Also, my neurotic self could not handle having to try to find housing every 3-4 weeks in a completely new city. That would be really stressful! And for the artists, this lifestyle can be really tough if they have family, though Cirque does try to accommodate for that. Basically, there is no real permanency.
  • People can be very messy at these types of shows. Popcorn everywhere, soda, liquor, beer, water spilled, half eaten pretzels and candy thrown on the ground. It was really gross at times. I guess this would be similar to a movie theater.
  • People also either do not read signs or completely disregard them. We had to tell numerous people that no flash photography or recording was allowed for the artists' safety, despite the signs and announcements. It is tough with cell phones with cameras to catch everyone.
And now for some Cirque du Soleil facts and what I learned about this show which I will now reveal was Ovo. Typically, I just don't reveal these things, but I really liked this show, so I want to be able to give you all my recommendation.

  • Cirque du Soleil is French for "Circus of the sun."
  • The Grand Chapiteau (the Big Top) seats about 2,600 people. It is set to be intimate, so everyone can see the stage well and feel the emotions of the artists.
  • Cirque started in 1984 with 2 street performers in Montreal, Canada.
  • There are 22 shows worldwide with a variety of themes and venues.
  • The show Ovo is about the world of insects.
  • Ovo is Portguese for "egg" which is supposed to embody the cycle of insectdom in awakening, playing, seeking love, finding love.
  • This show has 54 artists from an age range of 14-54 years old. They encompass 16 countries. When I looked at this program, there were only 2 artists from the US, the rest international. The entire Cirque du Soleil company is comprised of 5,000 employees, over 1,300 artists, and about 50 countries. It is also still a privately run company.
  • The insects range from a ladybug, a fly, a dragonfly, a mosquito, butterflies, ants, fleas, spiders, scarebs, crickets, cockroaches, and a "creatura."
  • This show is the first to have a female director.
  • The music in this show is Brazilian inspired. It's a really nice music track--very upbeat.
  • The diabolo juggler is apparently the only guy in the world who can juggle 6 diabolos, though he consistently performs with 4.
  • In this show, the scarebs in the trapeze act cover the most distance ever for a Cirque show. It takes 40 technicians to set up this act.
  • This show also uses the most lights ever in a Cirque show as well as the highest free-standing structure made for a show--the wall in this case that the crickets jump off from.
Their next stop for this show tour is Minneapolis. If you get a chance, it is really worth seeing.

p.s.--I had a really sweet moment. On one of the last days, they had like a "garage" sale of items you could buy for a discounted price. As workers, we already had a substantial price off, but these were even less because they couldn't sell these items to the public. One guy who I did not even know (he worked in a different dept.) overheard me saying I thought the little masks on the table were cute but didn't have any cash with me. Well, he just upped and offered to buy it for me. Such a nice gesture.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Dog bite inhibition and recovery

This past weekend I attended a 3-day dog seminar by one of the dog gurus of positive reinforcement.  As he would say his ideas are not new, but he has re-popularized them.  Several years ago this dog guru was going to retire from lecturing but decided to come back, mainly because he felt the state of dog training was going in a downward direction, ahem, with some people only believing things they were seeing on television.  Thus, the last couple of years or so, he has been lecturing worldwide again which many of us, especially those of us who are fairly young in this industry, are delighted in seeing.

I've heard this speaker before and have seen him at conferences, but this was the first I'd seen in this type of format.  Truly, it was a great seminar with a lot of information and better clarity as to why his specific method works.  I felt really inspired.

There was one thing that was especially interesting to me and related to eating disorders and recovery.  He was specifically talking about behavioral consults with owners.  The consults could be a variety of topics, but one of the most that not only he has seen but many of us are dogs who bite.  He allows the owner to give the history of their dogs--the how, why, when, where, triggers, etc. for the dog bites.  But for him, there are only two critical pieces of information:  1) Is the dog dangerous? and 2) Did the dog/person have to go to the vet/hospital?

The rest of the information, you could say fills out the story, but these are the defining criteria.  It doesn't really matter that the dog bit when this, this, and this (triggers we could say) happened, because all it means is there is still a problem.  Even if the dog has a predisposition (maybe wired to have anxiety) to biting or has a medical condition, or whatever, the whole point is that it never fully developed what we call good bite inhibition (meaning they know how to control their mouths and are less likely to bite you, a kid, another dog, animal, etc.).  

So where am I going with this?  It's a bit two-fold here.  First, many of us, professionals included, have a tendency to talk about the past a lot (and certainly there is a place and time for that).  There becomes a tendency to get lost in the details but a failure to truly look at what to do now and learn how to resolve the problem.  For example, we can say, well, this triggered me, so that was why I didn't do x, y, or z.  But the thing is that that we have to stop looking at that "trigger" as I hate to put it this way but an excuse at times.

Perhaps, I view this differently from others, because I'm in a different place now; or maybe I got tired of looking at the past (there is only so much sulking, feeling ashamed, feeling guilty, etc. that one can do) or triggers or whatever and wanted to figure out how to help myself in the here and now.  

Secondly, there are a lot of us who walk around in "functional" modes.  This would actually equate to the most dangerous type of dog--the dog who is well socialized but has poor bite inhibition.  An example he gave us was a dog who was a therapy dog.  The dog (a Golden Retriever by the way) was about to retire and was going on one last therapy trip with another handler, not the owner.  The handler accidentally slammed the dog's tail in the door, and the dog redirected and bit her arm multiple times, sending her to the hospital.

With the "functional" ED person, we are well liked, do well at our jobs/school, take care of our family, go to social event, etc. but then do poorly at taking care of ourselves--to the point of physically and mentally wearing ourselves down to just a stub of nothing.

Now, I don't think there is necessarily a denial problem, but there is a kind of recovery lapse here. I certainly raise my hand to this.  I've been there and done that, thinking well, this, this, and this isn't happening, so it's not a problem, it's not a big deal.  But it IS a big deal.  Each moment we stop ourselves from a a certain meal, a fun event, a social event, a time with our families, a time with friends, a memory-making trip, we are depriving ourselves of something.

Anyway, I do not know if this analogy will make sense to people, but the whole notion of even though there is x, y, and z that happens, there is ultimately still a problem.  And that is something we have to remember at times when we become complacent with ourselves.  For those of us who may be stuck in the past and in the details, we have to continue to look forward and not backward.  Andi n each of these processes, it is of course baby steps along the way. 

Monday, May 2, 2011

FP Marathon race recap

First off, thanks everyone for the good luck wishes on my race yesterday. Overall, there was good and band but no ugly. Yay!

The good:
-Time was decent (more on that later).
-It was fun meeting up with some others from the running group.
-I plowed through even when I felt horribly tired.
-My bondiband headband stayed on.

The bad:
-My chip timer on my shoe laces kept hitting me mid ankle every time I had a heel strike. This caused me to change my gait. Even after the race, a mark was left on my foot and anything near that spot, still made my foot feel like the chip timer was there.
-It rained on and off the entire race, and there was high humidity.
-My legs felt like lead.

That's a bit of a summary. As I mentioned in my last post, this race was more about camaraderie than anything else. I met with three girls from the running group early in the morning to drive over to the race site. There were tons of people there. I knew there was no way of finding some of the people who we had all wanted to say hi and wish luck to in a sea of 20,000 people.

By the time the race began, it was already raining and my shoes and socks were soaked midway through the race. K (one of the girls that rode with me) and I were going to run together since we both had the same race goal time. Well, she took off at the start, going out faster than I expected. I ran too fast out of the corral as well. By mile 4, I was already tired and had started slowing down.

The rest of the race, I had periods of being slower or faster depending on the terrain. However, I could never pick up my pace greatly. I finished the race about 8 minutes slower than I had originally wanted, but it was still a decent time. It gave me a baseline for where I was, having only gotten back into running at the end of January after a year in a half hiatus and only running 2-3x/week. If you all remember, I have also been doing physical therapy for awhile. Normally, I mention if I'm going to run a race or something, but I got yelled at once for that by my PT, so I refrained from telling him since my injuries have been doing a lot better.

One thing I can say, and no one would ever expect to hear me say this, but I actually miss the hills I used to run on out in the country. And this is coming from a girl who used to hate hills! Seriously though, that put me in such great condition.

K. who went out faster than me finished a little over a minute before me, and the rest of our crew came in a few minutes later. We all said how we had a hard time picking up the pace, so it was good to hear it was not just me. I heard later that a lot of people were disappointed with their race times. My guess, it was the humidity.

As we all finished, we made our way to the post race food aisles. There were mega amounts of everything--bananas, chocolate milk, yogurt, fruit cups, fritos, doritos, granola bars, water, fruit, etc. I guess when you have to feed 20,000 people, it takes a lot of food. K. actually took a box and just started grabbing multiple items of everything. We all laughed about that.

On the drive back to our cars, I learned a few interesting things about these girls. They all went to the same high school, ran cross country and did other sports together. They were also all pregnant at the same time with two of them delivering on the same day! It left me feeling like the odd girl out, but it was nice of them to include me, even with all of us wearing matching barrettes. Surprisingly, even after learning this, I didn't feel too much like a "tag-a-long."

The rest of the day was pretty non-active and low key, other than discovering Tovah somehow hurt her toe and was limping. Well, except when she saw a squirrel in the yard. Then, miraculously, there was no more limp, and she ran off into the yard. But of course, came back limping. ;-)

That's the recap for this race. Hopefully, there will be another one later in the year. No dates or decisions have been set yet.

Note--Some interesting tidbits about this race:
-The woman who won the marathon is legally blind. She said she used the big clocks and "pig" markers as a way to guide her.
-The third place female winner in the 5k was a woman who won this marathon five years ago. Six months ago, she was hit by a car while cycling, having extensive head and body injuries. She and her husband are both doctors, and it was actually her husband who was dispatched to the scene of the accident, though he did not recognize her. Both were the honorary starters on Sunday.
-I saw a man wearing minimalist shoes.
-I saw another man actually going barefoot. This barefoot/minimalist shoe is the latest trend in running. I have decided to keep my shoes and not run like a Kenyan who can easily run barefoot.
-There was a lot of pink clothing, costumes, and a streaker.
The news story said he had to borrow a pair of his father's shorts which were too big. The shorts kept falling off, so he just let them go. He apparently wouldn't stop running, so he was tasered by the police. He plead not guilty today in court.