35:16.50 
That's what I ran the 5K in this morning. That's slightly better than a 12 minute mile and good for about a 5.2 mph average. I hit the first mile at 11:46. The race wasn't too hard but the weather was brutal - low 40's but WINDY; felt more like February than April. But, I did it.

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Embarrassment 
Obama's DVD gift to Brown - it's the thought that counts

...pretty lame gift, especially from one who's supposed to be an intellectual. Some DVD's and a few toys
for a pen holder carved from the timbers of the sister ship of the one the White House desk is made from and a first edition of a seven-volume biography of Winston Churchill, the Mail is appalled that "Barack Obama, the leader of the world's richest country" gave Brown a box set of 25 DVDs

and
giving the Obama's daughters Top Shop dresses (with matching necklaces)


If Bush had committed this egregious gaffe CNN, MSNObama, ABC, and CBS would have covered this 24/7 and ranted on how he insulted our biggest ally. All news about the economy would have been tabled so as to stoke ire in the American people about a president who thinks only of movies and toys. But, since this was Obama, there was very little mention by our ass-kissing, tingle up my leg, inept, incompetent, and feeble media.

Oh, and by the way, THE DVDS DO NOT WORK IN GREAT BRITAIN.

IF BUSH HAD DONE THIS WE WOULD HAVE HEARD ABOUT IT FOR 60 DAYS STRAIGHT.


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Ready for the 5K 
I am ready for my first official 5K this coming Saturday. I have run about four unofficial 5K's over the past month - two on the treadmill and at least two 3+ mile routes through the neighborhood. My plan this week is: did the gym yesterday (2.5 on the treadmill and some lifting), bike today (about 7 mi), rest Wed., gym Thursday (light - 1.5-2, then lift), rest Friday with a dinner of enriched pasta. Saturday, I plan on a banana and maybe a fiber bar for breakfast around 7:30-8 and the race is slated for around 9.

Weather looks favorable - low of 40 Friday night so that means probably high 40's to 50 or so at race time, no rain in the forecast either.

So, I am definitely ready. My goal is to complete it in under 37:00.

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New Bike - Soon 
I look to upgrade from my $125 Sears bike that I bought in 1996. It has served me well and I will keep it as a backup. I test-rode a Trek 3900 the other day and it was nice and I may buy one. Other models I am considering are the Cannondale F9, Gary Fisher Tarpon, and Giant Boulder (an odd-sounding name for a bike). I am also scouting for used bikes on Craigslist and Ebay but will likely buy something new. Some general research has unveiled that Trek and Gary Fisher (Trek owns Gary Fisher) bikes are likely made in China by Giant, a Taiwanese company, and Giant makes most of their bikes in Taiwan and China. So, I may end up just going with Giant. I would like to ride one or two before I commit but I haven't ruled out Gary Fisher or Trek entirely. I also want to test-ride the F9 too, a lower-priced Cannondale which means it's contracted out and probably made in the same plant as the Treks and Fishers. I will likely have my new bike in a few weeks, just in time for this early-spring-but-still-frigid weather to break. I look forward to prime biking season and can't wait to get my new toy and go out and play.

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Our V.P. 


Funniest pic I've seen in a long time. lol

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I'll take that in 28 Quarters, please 
Earlier this week I got an email from payroll about some stimulus plan that just kicked in and that some of us might see less federal taxes taken out.

So, my check was $7 more.

Payday happened to coincide with the day my IRA statement came.

Keep the "change" coming!

It will take longer than 28 quarters to recoup my losses. Hoping, of course, that the market will come back. Given the current competence level of the executive and legislative branches of our government, one can't be too sure.

Someone emailed me this with the subject "Americans Following Obama":



...and this acronym:

OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America

Only time will tell. However, had the market dropped 20% seven weeks into Bush's first term*, there would've been calls for a recall or impeachment.



*DJIA was down 2%, 10686 to 10468, certainly tolerable.

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<sarc> I'm glad 
...that so many of us voted for "change." I really enjoy watching 13 years of investing dwindle into nothing. </sarc>

Gee, let's vote in a left of left liberal to complement the nincompoops in Congress; you know, that Democratic majority of nincompoops we elected in in 2006. Worst congress ever (approval ratings much lower than Bush and a historic Gallup low) and an inexperienced candidate - and one who was part of that congress; yeah, that'll work.

I think it's time for a recall; not just of the President but of congress too.

Whatever the current dopes in congress are pushing, our President, if he cared for the average American, would DO THE EXACT OPPOSITE!

Instead of talking down the economy, try to pump it up1. Everything that this current lot does, sends the DJA into another tailspin. If you're heading over the falls, turn around and paddle faster in the OPPOSITE direction. Idiots.

Say what you want about Dubya, but at least he held the ship together. This current lot is bailing us out by poking holes in the hull. Frankly, I am surprised they are smart enough to even do that but I guess if you try to shoot yourself in the foot long enough, eventually you'll hit it.

Maybe under Dubya people didn't have confidence in his Presidency but at least there was confidence in business. Now, there is no confidence in business and no confidence in the presidency. Businesses at least usually find ways to make money. Government only looks for ways to spend money and nothing could be truer today.

As of now, the Bush years seemed pretty darn good. Things didn't start to slide until the 110th Congress took office and the major meltdowns didn't really happen until the polls started indicating that BHO's lead over McCain was insurmountable for McCain and thus became imminent that BHO would win the election. And once he did, things got even worse2.

And let's not forget the media that began cheering for a recession after the 2004 election. Repeat a lie often enough and it does become truth. Treasonous bastards.

Hopefully, I should have time to recoup these losses. Unfortunately, many don't.

1 No sooner than I type this, Ben Bernanke says that the recession may end this year and stocks get an upwards bounce; good, even if it's a small step. Think positive. Let's see of BHO negates this by talking down the economy again tonight during his address.

2Frankly, I think this meltdown was too well timed to be the result people who can't pay their mortgages. The sh*t hit the fan after McCain got the bump from the Palin announcement.
I think some bigwig liberals with lots of money (George Soros types) had a plan in place in case the Republican nominee was leading or rising in the polls 8-10 weeks out from election day. Call me crazy and maybe I'm wrong but we'll know for sure in perhaps 10 years or so. We could know sooner if anyone in the media cared to investigate this odd coincidence but don't hold your breath. I'm not convinced that this isn't an October surprise gone awry or, perhaps worse, a carefully crafted plan to force drastic socialist-type policies into our lives. An October surprise is supposed to be something with some truthful elements spun the right way that it taints the character or questions the ability of the candidate, not something that wrecks the economy and puts people's jobs and retirement savings in jeopardy. This time, someone went way too far.

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First 5K 
I registered today for my first ever 5K. The race will be on the first Saturday of April.

I need to keep on with my current training schedule - running (weather permitting) or the treadmill at the gym; four days a week. All things considered, I find straight running much easier than a treadmill. Maybe it's the intimidation of the digital screen showing every tick of 1/100 of a mile or maybe it's just that's stationary and boring. Of course, I've been lifting at the gym and I will hit the bike when it's warm enough too.

Nonetheless, I will be ready.

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200 
I didn't know this until about a week ago, but Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin were both born on February 12, 1809. Both great men in their chosen careers, yes, and both controversial during their time, with Darwin still being a subject of controversy. Nonetheless, happy 200th to both.

I'm a little miffed that Google decided to honor Darwin over Lincoln though. I was hoping they would do something that honored both - perhaps one side of their logo be Lincoln and the other being Darwin. But that might look tacky. Maybe Google sees themselves as more science than politics (debatable since Google admits to censoring content, which always results in political sway) but that's another topic.

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Taste of Spring 
Being a balmy 55F yesterday, I got the bicycle out and did a standard route of about 8.5 miles. I got a little wet due to the melting snow but it was worth it. The cold and well below normal temperatures locally (-4 for Jan and so far -2 for Feb; if they were 4F above, some people would use that biased sample as proof of global warming, like they do nowadays when a heatwave strikes a region in JULY) it's been harder to get out and run and no way am I biking in 22F weather. I do go to the gym two days and week and spend some time running on the treadmill and then do some weightlifting too. I am eyeing a 5K in March which is six weeks earlier than the 5K I wanted to run in the first weekend of May. However, I haven't done 5K yet in any of my runs and my best was 2.5m (4.17km) on the treadmill. If I keep on and can plan on March being warmer than Feb., I may be able to really tune myself up during the first two weeks of March. For now, I'll keep doing what I am doing and that might get me ready for that 5K around St. Paddy's Day.

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Time to Move On 
For those of you with those "W" stickers on your car bumpers and rear windows, it's time to move on. We have a new President and you need to replace those stickers with something reflective of our new administration.



Sometimes you just have to move on. No excuses. And if you're one of the 500 million Americans who have lost your job in the past month, don't say you can't find the time to, um, upgrade? Or would it be downgrade?



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Only in NJ 
Yes, in New Jersey, the state that can't even manage itself well enough to keep casinos - an excellent source of free money - open; comes this story:

It's Raining Dead Birds in New Jersey

So let me get this straight, one of only two states where you can't pump your own gasoline, people are expected to clean up poisoned birds from their property? Sure, they say the poison used poises no threat to people but I can assure you that animal carcasses will bring a crowd of nature's scavengers, especially given the cold weather. Go ahead, pick up that decomposing animal or fight off that rabid raccoon for that dead bird, But, pump your own gas? Never! It's not safe!

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