Wednesday, January 31, 2007


12 miles in three days has finally capped my capacity to suck up more running. I've been a bit frantic trying to get in as much time on the road as I can tolerate and still make a strong recovery. This 30km run in March is possibly going to be the most challenging physical thing I've ever done and I feel unprepared.

There's nothing quite like a deadline to sharpen my focus. I have another deadline that will hopefully yield a gear cutter so I can offer that horological service in my at long last. It's a project that's gone on far too long. Hopefully this is the home stretch.

It's been cold and tomorrow's run will be even colder, but I'll either do some shorter speed work or just simply a shorter run. I have to remain healthy and PU came home from work on Monday with a flu. She's got the pain threshold of a pit bull. In all the time I've known her, she's never once come home sick before this. After twenty some years, I can count the days on one hand that she's been home sick from work. I DO NOT WANT THIS FLU!

Her rebound has been mercifully quick, but she was still eating pretty lightly yesterday.

I'll stretch today in a patient manner and hope my body is back willing to dance with the road miles again tomorrow. I'm a little fatigued, but that's only showing up in being somewhat irritated at nothing at all. My legs are still strong. Now, if I could just begin to drop a few pounds and cultivate more of a runners form instead of trying to emulate a bowling pin.

Boo is off on a ski trip for a few days. The Canadian Rockies will no doubt provide her with some entertainment. I hope it doesn't provide her with opportunity to visit a cast making facility.

Manon decided to remain at home while I went into the city to a MHS meeting. I won the raffle! I'm the proud owner of two Honduran Milk Snakes! I haven't cleared up what sex they are, but I believe I have one of each.

Flickr is the larger of the two and darker by far. He/She is so named for it's tendancy to throw it's head around. I'll get bit by this snake sooner rather than later. It was really not willing to sit still for a second for the photo shoot.

A handfull

Two Percent is a sweet little guy/gal. It's quite a mellow and I think it's an attractive looking little snake. They are very much like the Cali. King snake we have.


Aren't you proud? They are very fast and I'll likely get bit by the bigger of the two, but they aren't big snakes (yet) and last night proved that at least I've learnt a thing or two about handling snakes. One of the educated types got musk all over him when he had the larger of the two in hand last night. Owen is 13 I think and we had a good time chatting about fast small snakes. He had ribbon snakes for a long time and they are pretty quick little ones. The smaller of the two is a peach. Owen and I escaped without being stunk up and peed on.

The meeting was at Joey's place in St. Boniface. They have a huge brick mansion in the heart of old St. B. They've done a lot of work to bring it into line with current technology and it was a great space to be in. The tea was good too. During the meeting Joey had two crested geckos hatch that he'd been waiting on since the eggs were first dropped in August. Could his timing have been any better? I think not! Joey is just coming onto 14 years old. A cool kid. I'm going to try and talk his parents into having us over or them coming our way. I liked what was in their kitchen. Food!

The drive home was a bit challenging as I was tired and could have used some company. I stopped two miles north of home and shut the car off and stood outside in the wind and wind chill and was reminded once again, why it is that I live so far off the beaten track. Peace.

I bought my tickets for a brief trip to the west coast yesterday. I'll be off next week, Monday to Friday, then back in time for race day on Saturday. Ouch. I bet I'm a little slow on Saturday for the 5km event! Maybe not, but that weekend will have my longest run in preparation for the 30km deal too. That's going to be a tough weekend. I might save the LSD (long slow distance) for early in the week following which already sounds like so much wiser an idea.

The new spiffy crown went into my mouth yesterday. I almost missed the appointment thinking it was an hour later than it was. I know I'm flying too close to the sun when I blow off appointments like that. I was supposed to meet with my coach (ADHD) on Thursday last, but didn't even notice that I'd missed it until Friday night. With all the do-dads I have ringing alarms and beep ing me into submission, you would think that kind of mishap would be impossible, but no. The good news is that the shop is rockin' like it hasn't in years. The ibuprofen is still being popped like candy. Gratefully, it seems to be all that's required. The changes in how the pressure is distributed on the left side of my bite, seems to have been like shifting sand. It would be nice to have that all settle down now.

I think I found a parrot. Aren't you all glad you don't have to live with me and my critter compulsion? Don't answer that! It's the right deal or at least I hope so. I think he's a Hahn's/Nobel Macaw. Cross your fingers for me please. He's supposedly quite the character. He's wild caught from a day when the captors broke a wing as standard practise to keep them from flying, but still retain a full plumage. So he can't fly. He's 15 years old. Oh fun! I've looked at getting a larger parrot for a number of years, but could never find the time where an expensive bird might be welcomed. With the money out of the way, maybe. We'll see how it pans out.

Wood splitting anyone? It's well within frost bite range out there.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


The house is spectacular. Laundry, dishes, floors, all are rockin'. The shop is spewing work. The kids are smiling. Although Manon did take a round out of her math teacher yesterday. If the administration could begin to implement the walk and not just the talk, we might not have those days ever again!

Squeaky wheel management pisses me off. No time for anything but the most base of human instincts? I shouldn't write when I'm this tired.

The dentist is a piece of work. He hates it when I prove to be more sensitive than he might prefer. Monday I had the prep work done for a crown on the lower back molar on my left side. He hit it with a leisurely blast of repetitive shock treatment from a syringe, came back and set to work. I flinched hard within a minute of him making a start so he just whacked me with anesthetic over and over again. My gum is swollen still and remains proud of where my teeth make contact, so every time I close my jaw and my teeth make contact, I'm irritating the hell out of the injection site. If I'm not healed up before next Tuesday's date to complete this crown job, I'm going to tell him to wait. Last night the pain was interfering with my sleep, and tomorrow is Friday. Ahhhhh!!

PU phoned from work to say that the odd feeling in her ear had sprouted into a big redness. She's hacking with a cough and had been complaining about shooting spikes of pain in her head, emanating from her ear. I learnt years ago, that even if liters of blood are pooling around her feet, it's best to leave all commentary about her well being to the little voices that play in her head. Apparently the doctor said it was an infection, but not of the inner ear. Odd, I think, but she does wear ear plugs to defend against the evil snoring monster. She wakes me up when she begins to have thoughts about killing me... so far.

Forecast for tomorrow is blowing snow and ugly driving. Oh joy. Anyone want to get a run in before heading out about noon?

A bit of a sore throat, and ding! Bed time for the knobular guy.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

15th annual Polar Bear run

It's been ages I know. I've been working! Go figure.

Too much to say and I need my beauty sleep. Below is my latest project. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger right? This may be a close shave.

Below is the text from the pdf file I got last week.


15th Annual Polar Bear
The 15th annual Polar Bear Run is scheduled for Sunday, March
11, 2007. The run is approximately 18 – 19 miles, starting at
Husivak Road at the lake front (approx 4 miles south of Gimli)
and ending at Grand Marias. There are two start times, 8.00 am
for the 3 hr plus runners and 9.00 pm for runners who can
complete the race under 3 hours.
The run takes place on the Snowman Trail that crosses the lake,
groomed and comes complete with a warm up shack in the
middle of the lake. The trail has markers every 1/10 th of a mile
so you can keep your direction should the weather reduce the
visibility. The footing varies, some years there has been large
sheets of ice which makes it difficult to run or there has been
some loose snow which again creates problems. Generally the
footing is crusty and you don’t sink into the packed snow too
The weather has varied greatly over the last 14 years, from rain
to blizzards, and from plus freezing to minus 30 degrees. We
run from west to east as the winds are generally prevailing from
the west. Conditions are checked the night before and the run
organizer will make the final decision if the race has to be
postponed. Generally speaking, the race would only be
cancelled if there were strong easterly winds, open water or
surface water on the ice. The race has been cancelled once and
postponed twice due to weather over the history of the run.
The ground support sled will carry water to replace runner’s
water bottles during the race. It is important that as much as
possible, runners carry their own water bottles and keep it in an
insulated container. During previous runs, the ground support
water supply has frozen up within the first hour and or the
supply has been extremely cold which will add to your chances
of hypothermia if it is a cold day. Also, the ground support may
only meet up with you every half hour and towards the end, this
half hour without water could be a problem if you are on the
verge of dehydration / hypothermia.
Dress warm. The best gear is a layer that is breathable but yet
wind proof. The air temperature will generally be 3 – 5 degrees
colder than the land temperature and if sunny, the sun will
create the opposite effect and cook you. The worst is starting
with a bright sun and at the end the sky clouds over and we start
getting a slight head wind off the opposite side. The
temperature in this scenario can swing 10 – 15 degrees. Most
people run on regular runners, wind pants with one layer
underneath and maybe 3 layers on their upper bodies. It would
be prudent to bring a balaclava just in case the wind changes
and you need something to protect your exposed face.
Sunglasses are important and without them you will probably go
home half blind and a splitting headache. Most runners come
home with true sunburn from the run.
Additional gear; it would be advisable to bring a compass just in
case the weather really changes and the visibility drops. One
year you would hit the incline of the opposite shore without
seeing it. Insulated water bottles and some nutrients for energy
are also recommended.
The cost depends on the number of runners. We collect a fee to
cover the cost of renting the snowmobile sled. I have found
volunteers in the past but they are usually the ones who cancel
out by the race day. I generally rent at least one sled and
blackmail my son into operating it so we know there is at least
one machine to help out. If anyone know of someone who will
volunteer, this would be great.
After the run, we meet for breakfast at Grand Beach (Tempo Gas
Bar West Beach Restaurant). Leading up to the race day, we will
use an email group list to circulate names and car pooling
Attached are a couple of pics from two years ago!
I hope this provides you with enough information for now; I look
forward to seeing you soon.
Jeff Badger