Monday, December 29, 2008

CA Pizza Kitchen

We ate at a CA Pizza Kitchen last night.  It was Debbie's birthday so we were at the mall doing a little shopping and decided to try it out.  I had it once before as a carryout--it was many years ago and only one or two pieces of pizza.  I remember it having an interesting menu but not much else.

Well, the pasta we got was just okay.  The pizza was terrific though.  We got the wild mushroom pizza and it was very good.  This will probably be a place we will go to again especially for the pizza.

We then caught a movie, Seven Pounds with Will Smith.  Good movie but the book was probably better.  At least I am assuming it was a book first.  Will Smith gave a good performance and the rest of the cast kind of looked familiar but I couldn't place any of them, except for Woody Harrelson.

Not sure if this is the last post of the year or not, but just wanted to point out that this post gives me 10 for Dec.  I did achieve my 10 posts per month this year--2008--which was one of my goals.  You might be thinking that is kind of a stupid goal, but the idea was to force myself to somewhat organize my thoughts and type something every few days.  That idea if you want to be a writer then write.  I am certainly not a writer and odds are probably long that I ever will be either, but I still figured it is probably a good exercise in self improvement.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Few short lines

It is late, so I am not going to type much.  Just some quick words.  I ran 2.1 miles on the treadmill at the community center tonight & then lifted for a few minutes.  Nothing too great but trying to get something in.

A lot of rain today.  It has really been a wet year.  I am guessing the soil should be good next year.  Maybe I will expand the garden a little and see what happens.

I just got over 200 pages read in War & Peace, still a very long way to go.  I am somewhere around 250 read in Plague Dogs, that leaves me at just over halfway done.  Thinking about that 3rd book still but just not pulling the trigger on it yet.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

More Books

I didn't have time to get a run in tonight so instead I stopped at one of the nearby libraries before going grocery shopping.  Picked up four books for one whole dollar.  It is a bargain even before I mention a name of a book.

First, I found King Jesus by Robert Graves.  I read Graves book, Goodbye to All That(I think that is the name) back in college.  It was an autobiography of his time in WWI.  I remember kind of liking it, but also the author being a little strange.  I also remember him being a well respected writer too, so I figured that was enough to buy the book.  Checking a wikipedia on it, it sounds like Graves has some out there beliefs and has kind of moulded the book into them.  In other words the book would definately not be considered accurate by the Catholic church.  Interesting but pretty far down my list of books to read.

Next, I found Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale.  I recognized Atwood as a author I should probably be more familiar with than I am.  This sounds like again an interesting read, but not sure when it will be fit in.

Third, I found The Last Brother by Joe McGinniss which is supposed to be about Ted Kennedy, but more like Joe Kennedy & foreward.  I am not a big fan of the Kennedys so thought it might provide some info about them at least.

Finally, found Prairie Visions, The Life and Times of Solomon Butcher by Pam Conrad.  It is more of a kids book but it is about Solomon Butcher a photographer/everything else, guy in turn of the century Custer County Nebraska.  I saw some good photos of sod houses and the tough families that lived in them.  Was instantly attracted to the photos, the writing didn't matter too much on getting this book.  

Still working away at War & Peace and Plague Dogs but not going very fast on either.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Queen of Spades -- #30 finished

Yesterday I finished off book number 30 for the year.  The Queen of Spades and Other Stories by Alexander Pushkin.  As I said in the last post, I really enjoyed these short stories.  A good mix of happy endings & sad endings with them.  From reading them I think you can tell the writer probably had as much fun in writing them as the reader gets from reading them.  

Not sure if I will get another book started yet or not.  Probably not for a few days at least.  With Christmas coming up, I will probably be struggling for time to read anyway.  I am off work next week so I might look to add something then.  Of course, I also have a pretty long honey-do list too.

I was going to run tonight after work but instead went out for more Christmas shopping.  At least this time I did not get stuck in traffic but I had to go to 4 different stores looking for what I wanted and ended up buying something that sounded good but still not really sure if it is right.  I am calling Christmas shopping done, now I have to do some Birthday shopping.  That will have to wait until Friday or Saturday though.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


I did pick out a 3rd book, The Queen of Spades and Other Stories by Alexander Pushkin.  It is a short book of 6 stories and I have already read 4.  I don't know what it is about Russian novels but I just like them and now I guess it goes for short stories as well.  I haven't read any Pushkin before but these short stories have just been kind of fun reading.  

I have pushing War & Peace and Plague Dogs to the background for now because I really want to make sure I get my 30 books read in 2008.  I have a stack of books I want to get read but finding 30 for 2009 might be a little tough.  I might just stick with my original goal of 24 or average 2 a month.

I really need to look back and find my post from the beginning of the year where I set out a few goals and see how I did this year.  The reading goal was the one that stuck out most in my mind.  I think there was a gardening one that I guess I barely did.  I think there was also a running one that I probably didn't do.  Some others that I kind of vaguely remember like going to a college baseball game and I think some other sport as well.

Well, I did to the community center tonight and put 2 miles in--lots of walking and some light jogging--on a tread mill.  I really don't like treadmills, just really boring.  Debbie took a nap this afternoon with Angie so I had to wait until they woke up and by then it was already dark.  I really don't like running on streets in the dark, especially during Winter when drivers are really not expecting anyone to be out and about.  Since I was at the community center, I also did some light weight lifting.  I know I mention this way too often, but I really need to start waking up early and doing this before work at least once or twice a week--maybe a new goal for 2009.

Well, it is very late, but I might put a few more pages in before calling it.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Just a quick update on stuff

Again I am not really inspired to type up anything so I will just do a quick update on the normal stuff I talk about.

--Reading The Plague Dogs by Richard Adams.  I really enjoyed the other two books by Adams that I read, this one not so much.  I need to check the order in which they were written, but I know Watership Down was earlier.  The reason is, it almost seems as though, he--the author--has realized he is successful and wants to make every paragraph have special meaning instead of just furthering the story.  I am getting close to 200 pages in with a total of 480--long ways to go.

--Reading War & Peace by Leo Tolstoy.  Good stuff.  Around 150 pages in, so a very long way to go.

--Reading, 3rd book, don't know yet.  I have read 29 books so far this year and would like to get 30 done.  I know I won't finish War & Peace and it is looking doubtful that Plague Dogs will get done before the end of the year either.  I will probably look for a 3rd book to get on and finish right away.

--Haven't run since Sunday.  Feeling fat & sluggish.  I have been way over eating this whole week and really since Thanksgiving.  I need to really tone down my eating.  Not sure if I will get a run in tomorrow or not--I am off work.

--My car wouldn't start today so I had to barrow my father-in-laws pickup to get to work.  The battery was run down, but Advance Auto charged it and said the battery is still fine.  Don't know if this means an alternator or starter or something else.  I will have to see if it starts tomorrow or not & go from there.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Slow Running

I finally got a run in.  It was actually pretty nice day today, windy and in the 50's.  Tonight it is raining and will be freezing overnight with sleet/snow later.

Today though was good and I finally had a chance to get a run in.  It was only 3 very slow miles, something like 13:45, 13:30 and 12:40.  I guess I had run 2 miles on 12/5 at the Community Center, but otherwise nothing else since before Thanksgiving.  I want to get a couple more runs in this week and kind of see where I am.  I want to look at doing a Frost Bite Series race or two but want to be in decent enough shape to at least attempt them.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I do not like to shop

I do not like to shop, at least for Christmas stuff.  After work I was headed to a mall a few exits down the outer belt.  Well of course the outer belt was a parking lot, even after I had waited till what should have been late in the rush hour.  I only had to get to one store and after wandering around, I did eventually find what I needed.  A drive and trip to another store where I didn't find anything and then home.  This just means at least one more trip out shopping to get it done.  I know I will not be doing it after work though if I can at all help it.

Monday, December 8, 2008


I am tired & getting ready to be off to bed, but realized I hadn't posted much of anything in Dec yet.  Well, it is not happening tonight either.  This is just another checking in post--mostly to make sure I get to my 10 this month.

Not running recently & not reading enough.  Went to the Billikens game on Saturday at the new arena--pretty nice.  Good time & was impressed with the businesses that have started up in the area.

That should do it, I am off to sleep now.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Eaten too much

It all started with Thanksgiving and has just continued since then.  Eating too much.  Throw in the fact that I haven't run in over a week & a half, well I just feel like a slug.  Not inspired to blog or do much.  Busy at work and busy after work each day this week--no fun.  Well that is a start to Dec, got to get in 10 this month.