Sunday, May 31, 2009


I ran the 5k this morning.  Time of 32:45, exactly 1 whole second faster than the 5k I ran in Nov.  I wanted to stay under 33 minutes so happy with that.  I was actually able to run the whole thing without a walk break.  My garmin showed my time at 32:39 and the distance around 3.28, so if true that just means more room for improvement.  

It was a small race maybe 70 or 80 runners and walkers only.  I liked it that it was small & that it was only a 5k so it was over quickly or so it seemed.  I will have to check out some race calendars to see if anything interesting is coming up.  I would like to go longer but maybe shorter races where I can improve my speed might be more beneficial.  Will just have to see on this.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Semi True--#31 finished

This is a kind of interesting book about a longtime truck driver that has settled into a job driving for a radio show, I think.  It really wasn't too clear in the book.  It also mentioned on his bio that he writes for Prairie Home Companion or something like that.  This book has some interesting stories and experiences, but after reading Poe Ballantine's What I Like About America, it is easy to rate Semi True more than a few notches below this.  That is not to say Semi True isn't a decent read, but in comparison much less interesting.  I still don't have a good feel for who the author really is, he mentions things about himself, but don't get much beyond he really enjoys driving his truck for the show.

Oh well not every book is going to be a winner for me.  It is posted on PBS now with 1 other person already having this book out there.  I am guessing a couple of months but could even be much longer I guess.

I am still reading Avenger and Bow Grip and will look at adding a 3rd yet as well.  Sunday I am running a 5k so will have to see how that goes.  I should really get some sleep now, could help me tomorrow, I guess. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Rules of Deception--#30 finished

I am moving into uncharted territory for myself now.  Last year for the whole year I read 30 books.  Now May is not even over and I am at 30 for the year.  I know a lot of it has to do with my reading 2 to 3 books at a time and throw in the whole PBS thing but I am not sure that those two things are enough of an explanation for it.  Oh well, it really doesn't matter because I have really been enjoying the books that I have been reading.

Rules of Deception is certainly falling into my enjoyable list of books.  There is lots to like about it when I think how it compares to other recent books.  It has a smaller core group of characters which makes keeping track of who is who much easier.  It has a couple of surprises toward the end of the book that I didn't see coming--I kind of hoped on one of them but really didn't expect it.  It was short chapters that really kept the action moving.  It tied things up nicely towards the end and let the book finish.  There are no ongoing characters or a series in this book.  I certainly would recommend it to someone looking for a mystery with some action and spy stuff as well.  Fun read.

By the way it is on the PBS WL so it will probably be moving out to another reader here later this week too.  I also posted Bigger Deal and it should be moving too.  I ordered another Mari Sandoz book last week Cheyenne Autumn and just ordered a 2 for 1 of The Big Question by Chuck Barris and Phi Beta Bimbo since I have more than enough credits sitting around.  Yes Phi Beta Bimbo is a romance type book but it sounded interesting and there wasn't much selection on the person's library & it might be a book my wife would read, well maybe.

I am still reading Avenger and just started Semi True on Sunday night.  I will probably start a 3rd book right away as well, probably a WL book since the other 2 are not.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Angels & Demons--#29 finished

The movie just came out but I think I can wait to see it, especially since I haven't seen The DaVinci Code yet either--or read the book yet.  I will probably wait to read the book first with it also.  As for Angels & Demons it was okay.  It was good action eventually and did turn into a pager turner the last 250 or so pages.  I had heard criticism of the writing but that the story was good & interesting & I guess I agree with this.  None of the characters really did it for me, too many things they did that were different or out of character.  The whole plot of the Illuminati and the chasing down the clues and trying to save the day though was fun.  Some of the inner workings of the Vatican and the Papal election were also interesting, but I have to doubts on the authenticity of these details as well.  

An interesting book that should make a good movie.  If someone hasn't read it yet, no reason to really rush out and do so but enjoyable if expectations are tempered if do want to read it.  I have posted it on PBS and I think there are only 2000 or so copies ahead of it, so will probably only move with a deal.  That is okay because I got it from a deal on PBS as well.

Still reading Rules of Deception and will get back into Avenger also.  The problem with those 2 and Angels & Demons is that they are all too similar investigation/action type books, I probably need to find something a little different and start on it also.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Nothing Much

It has been a few days since I typed anything down so here's a few quick words.  I am tired and kind of bleah.  I am off work tomorrow though, but my wife has volunteered me to help at school for Rose's class field day for a couple of hours in the morning.  I took tomorrow off to get things done around the house since we have a wedding out of town this weekend & won't be able to get to them then.  Oh well, it shouldn't be too bad.  I also want to get in some kind of run tomorrow because I know I won't when we are out of town.

Last Saturday I ran 6 miles and was very happy with the time, I think the slowest mile was 12:15, otherwise the other 5 were under 12 minutes.  Tuesday we did another lunch time run at work, 2.25 miles at just under 11 minute pace.  Since I am doing good on my running, I want to keep it up so running tomorrow really has to happen.

Still working on Angels & Demons and Rules of Deception and added a 3rd book that only read a couple pages so far, Avenger--a Frederick Forsyth book.  Avenger is getting pushed back though.  Actually all 3 are kind of getting pushed back because I am watching more TV lately with baseball on and then DVRing Late Night Poker.  These are cutting into my reading times, that is why the reading is really slowed up these last couple of weeks.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Things I Like About America--#28 finished

I really enjoyed this book or actually a collection of short stories/narratives by Poe Ballantine.  Last year I read his book God Clobbers Us All and liked it a lot.  So much that I kept it and won't even post it on PBS even though it is a WL book or was at one point.  Even though I liked God Clobbers...I have to say Things I Like About America was better.  To hear about his traveling/wandering from place to place in search of something only he knows is kind of interesting.  I also think the fact that now he is a published writer and somewhat successful or at least I hope so adds to the kind of amazing feeling you get when you hear what he endured through.

Everyone has those thoughts at some point in their life where they would like to travel and see the real America, not the Applebees and hotels by the interstate but the real downtowns and factories and greasy spoons, etc.  Poe Ballantine seems to have made it his mission to do this, of course it sounds like the first 10 maybe 20 years of doing this was in a kind of alcohol/drug induce haze as well.  I am now interested to know how he is currently and if a settled life at all agrees with him.  I know he has a followup novel out to God Clobbers.. and I think he has another narrative book out as well.  I have both on my WL at PBS also.  Although I am also thinking that actually buying the book might be good as well since he would actually get royalties in that instance, but my cheap self is winning at this point.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Quick update

Just a quick little update tonight on both reading & running.  I know I need to work on getting other/more topics covered here but these 2 seem to be the easiest for me to remember and type about.

Reading--I am still waiting for Careless in Red to get accepted, the person has 24 hours and it looks like they will use it.  Not too worried because when I last checked there were still 7 WL for it so one of them should accept.  I started reading 2 other books, Things I Like About America by Poe Ballantine and Rules of Deception by Christopher Reich.  Both are WL books but I plan on keeping Ballantine since there is a NE connection--he now lives in Chadron per his bio in the book & also I really like his writing.  I am still working on Angels & Demons, just passed 100 pages read tonight--finally.

Running--PSR night so I did run, but only 2 miles.  I forgot that it was also registration for next school year's PSR so I quit early to get back and get the registration done.  The plan is to run tomorrow at lunch at work so that would be another 2.25.  There is also talk of doing a 2nd lunchtime run as well this week.  Probably a good idea since I am not sure I would have time otherwise.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Runs 2 days in a row

Yesterday was the run in the rain, today it was just a run.  I did 5 miles and it was good.  I averaged overall at 11:57, so very happy with the time.  The last mile was by far the slowest at around 13:40, but that included my only water stop and had a good sized hill toward the end.  The next slowest mile was right at 12 minutes, so 4 miles at 12 or faster is very good for me.  Those speed days over the lunch time run is really helping me run a faster pace.  Of course it could also be the fact that I am getting in shape as well.  This morning I checked and saw that I was down nearly 8 pounds since that biggest loser thing at work started, 3 or 4 weeks ago.  With Sunday being Mother's Day I am almost certain there will be no run for me then, that is alright though since I should be able to get a PSR run in on Monday.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Careless in Red--#27 finished

It took a few days but I finally finished a book in May.  Careless in Red is a good book but it did take awhile to get into the flow.  There are many characters and the first hundred or so pages seemed like a new one was being introduced every few pages.  It was confusing, but since it was a mystery that might have been done on purpose as well.  The characters were human in that they had their faults, but some of those faults seemed too far over the top, especially at the end.  

The setting is the southern coast of England, in small tourist/surfing towns there.  The setting was interesting and since I had no knowledge of surfing going on in England kind of surprising.  I am not sure how long it was before I realized the setting was England also but more than a few pages certainly.  

There were several themes running throughout the book.  Dad's forcing a life on their children with some of the dad's/grandfather coming around in the end.  Death especially death by murder.  Religion played a part, several times it was mentioned no one practicing religion anymore, but one of the minor characters in the end is driven to a convent by her grandfather who was previously very much against this idea.  Loneliness and the idea of being alone comes through.  Also broken marriages, divorces and of the marriages that survived, they probably should have been broken marriages.

With the many characters and themes running, it is easy to see how the book ended up at 600+ pages.  Like I said, overall a good book & I am glad that I read it.  It is also a PBS WL book.  It was one's whose WL numbers were dropping so I wanted to get it done so I could mail it off while people still wanted it.  I think there were still around 9 that had it WL & I now I a hold on it waiting for the person to accept it.

This leaves as my only current book at the moment as Angels & Demons.  I have too many books to choose from though for my 2nd book and might even just pick out a 3rd right away also.  Will check these now & maybe have an answer to this in a day or two.

Friday, May 8, 2009


A quick update on my running.  On Wednesday a group of 4(me included) did our lunchtime run of 2.25 miles.  I am probably the one in the worst shape but still did it in 23:39, with the first mile at just under 10 minutes.  It is a very good workout for me.

Thursday night was a lifting night at the community center.  I am pushing myself a little more than I had at first.  Not really seeing results but lifting heavier weights.

Today, Friday, I am off work so I figured I would get a run in.  It was perfect early this morning, but of course I ran later in the morning when it was raining.  I did 4 miles at Creve Coeur Park, overall averaged around 12:30.  Slow but better than it would have been a few weeks ago.  The rain really weighed me down also.  Hopefully, I will be able to get another run in this weekend as well.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

May and no post till now

Here it is May 5th and no post until this one.  I guess from looking back on what I have been writing about this year it means I haven't finished a book.  It seems as though that is about 90% of what I type up on here.  Kind of boring stuff, but I guess it is my journal so well there it is.  It is late so I shouldn't be here long but here are a few things.

--Thomas went #2 on the toilet this weekend.  It was Sunday and we were at a church for a First Communion and at the end of Mass he actually asked to go to the bathroom.  Well we had to wait because someone was already there and while waiting he had an accident.  I took him in then and set him down and after making him sit more, out it came.  Lots of positive feedback and stuff followed.  Then a trip to Target for more underwear and shorts which once we got to the house for the reception, he messed them up also.  Oh well take the positives when you can.

--Angie is 4 today.  She had her party on Saturday and today she hit the zoo after school and then dinner at Subway and ice cream.  Good day.

--I am reading Careless in Red by Elizabeth George.  I am 270 pages in and still not that excited about the book.  It is 640 pages or something like that so a long way to go yet.  Some of the characters have possibilities so might turn out alright yet.  Also reading Angels & Demons the Dan Brown book, only 36 pages in so just getting started.  Actually I am putting most of my time into Careless in Red trying to get a big dent into it.  C in Red is a WL book with around 11 people wanting so I want to get it finished & mailed off ASAP.

--Last night during PSR I actually ran 2 miles with both miles under 12 minutes.  I had to hurry because Thomas was going to get to talk into the microphone and I wanted to be there for it & I was.  The run felt good.  I hadn't gotten a run in over the weekend & I knew with Angie's birthday today, Monday had to be a run day.  Tomorrow I am supposed to run at lunch during work--this will be the 3rd week in a row for me, of course weather permitting.

I am sure there is other stuff but I really need to be off to sleep.