Sunday, April 29, 2007

I'm out fifty bucks

Okay. I have plenty of excuses. Lots of pots on lots of burners. The wedding is burning, the job needs to be stirred, I have no friends in my spice cabinet. Gad! Really!

But I haven't even started to train for this ride yet, though I have always felt more confident riding with only foot miles of training then running having only pedaled. But I have to do more then just ride a bike....

Soooo (I suck at this kind of thing) I cant bring myself to talk about money unless I absolutely have to. And in this case I kinda decided months ago that I would just pay the fifty bucks myself and that would be good enough. AND I TOTALLY WILL....

But, if you think you might possibly be kinda interested in considering sponsoring my ride I would think you were really really cool. Plus! you get to find out my real name. Which everyone knows by now anyway.

And just to sweeten the pot, if you donate at least twenty bucks I will write you a personalized guest post that you can put up on your site, print and tear into a million tiny pieces, claim you wrote yourself or hold onto until I am famous and dead and can then sell for your twenty bucks back plus inflation.

Or, maybe I should do it for just five bucks. Shoot. Its hard to calculate you own market value.

I bet I could think of other incentives too, like I could write your URL on my back and then make eyes at other riders so they would be all curious and come click on your blog.

Let me say that $50 is the floor not the ceiling.

Anyway, I dont know how this whole thing works and I dont know if they will notify me who donated what but lets just see what happens.

If you donate and dont hear from me immediately, or you hate me for just asking email me at asiakennan at yahoo you know the rest.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

It was worth every minute

Monday I got sick and stayed home.

Tuesday I went back to work, then ran some miles and said I was all better.

Wednesday morning first thing I could barely talk but that was just a recovery blip so I went to work anyway, and then ran some more miles. By evening I was feeling pretty invincible so went out for dinner and drinks with Jen, Brandon and Vahid.

Today I went to work again with my head full of clouds, all the way rear-ending cars and running stop signs. I am slack-jawed and stupid with sick. I sneeze so hard it tingles down to my toes. I worked 11 hours and decided maybe I can run tomorrow instead. I think I just want to slip into a nyquil coma tonight.

Friday, April 20, 2007

The grooms ring

We are going out of town this weekend as well, the both of us this time off to Bellingham for some custom wedding ringing for Clark to match his grandmothers ring which will be mine. Clarks mother is an identical twin to her twin who lives there so far up north and I love her so much I keep Clark dusted and oil his joints. I am marrying for his family really, as much as I am marrying for him.

moments before we broke the news. my left wrist was still so stiff
I could not rotate it far enough to hold my wine glass

Last year we announced our engagement to his family at a gathering of almost 30 people out on the Oregon Coast for Memorial Day weekend. Before though I begged for time, hate that moment and when he would put it off no longer and he raised his voice I actually turned for the door and would have been halfway to highway 101 at a full speed run if it were not that the folds of his family surround me.

the ocean put on a smile for this photograph, so seemingly calm here

His brother, my brother took me aside before that moment on a fishing boat out at sea and said CONGRATULATIONS, I AM SO STOKED FOR ME CAUSE I GET YOU and I hugged him while the boat bucked and swayed in the worst storm since 1857. Strong men puked and lay curled in the cabin. I was far too mesmerized by the ocean to be sick how powerful a surge still pocked with drops of rain.

I want to drown, like wow!, but I was born with a caul over my head and I would likely fail. Instead it'd just cast a pall on the day and I'd be fished out of the black water on a hefty hook anyway, kicking. And still would have to bear the announcement. It isnt the news, it is the weight of the moment.

calm heads prevail

A year later we are still getting married, more so by the moment. Tomorrow we are leaving for Bellingham.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

I wish...

I am trying all night to find the perfect wording for this wedding invitation, and I hate it. I feel taut like a compass, like, will this matter in two years (no...)(...yes) because I still regret my yearbook write up from my senior year which I didn't even write but I never bothered to have changed till it was forevered in ink. Yes, tammit it bothers me still.

And the only things you can say suck. I cant stand the word joy when it is on a wedding invitation. Or the words forever, beginnings, lifetime, honor or hearts making the task of inviting anyone henceforth totally impossible barring bold print proclaiming HOLY SHIT THEY ARE ACTUALLY GONNA GO THROUGH WITH IT!

At one point I found something I felt I might like to see letter pressed on paper, a quote by Lao Tzu...

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.

In absence the great burden I turned to Clark who kinda looked at me HUH, said THATS KINDA NEGATIVE ISNT IT to which I flew into a rage (yes) and gestured wildly about the languages we speak and made like a boat passing in the night perhaps dashing itself in the great barrier reefs of humanity, oh the endlessness of self interest. After all, trust me it takes courage to love me.


And he went to bed saying (again) my extremism is frightening.



I am still looking for the right words or some preformat I can personalize but every keyword search I run takes me farther and farther away.

And there are plenty of thrilling sentiments out there still...

Spinning like a ghost
on the bottom of a
I'm haunted by all
the space that I
will live without

-Richard Brautigan

...but I cant put that on a wedding invitation can I?

Saturday, April 14, 2007

2007 Pear Blossom Run

I hate Medford, Oregon. They wont pay for libraries, they race on Saturdays and dont even chip time them, get a D- for bike friendliness and dont have any gottamned parking manners. And if you are from Medford I am sorry. I grew up in Ashland so you got to know...

(Its totally a Hatfield/McCoy thing. Ashland is gay and artsy, everyone uses expensive words and does yoga. Medford has a bumper sticker on its big truck that says IF IT HAS WHEELS OR TITS IT'S GONNA GIVE YOU TROUBLE and they all smoke at the dinner table. Every one of em!)

Anyway, I woke up on Saturday morning, in Medford, in a fairly unracelike mood, underslept and with half a mind to back out of the whole sorry affair. My Dad's race started at 7am (on a Saturday. jerks) so we had to get up at 530 to get to the start line.

The rain came down nonstop, big green seed growing rain -- not the kind of rain that gouges the soil but the gentle nonstop rain that you cannot outrun, drops you cannot dodge between. Naturally at least half of the women running arrived in full theater makeup, pancake and blue eye shadow, because that is how they roll in Medford. How do they perspire?

My Dad finished in 32:31 for 3.1 miles with an ankle the size of a softball. He swears it doesnt hurt but I don't see how it can't. It must be the anesthetizing quality of the reallyreally polluted air in that city.

My race started an hour after his ended. By then my shoes were wet and my hair was wet and I could not feel my fingers (the air?), but within minutes of the starting gun I stopped complaining in my head and just ran. It kept raining. IT NEVER NOT RAINED. For not one second. I never did mind running in the rain, in fact I like it quite a bit, but I find it disheartening to have to start out running in the rain.

I like endurance running because no matter how much you train you can't finish, you cant find any more reserves, you simply can not keep going. Inside something rages and something rebels and something gives up but somehow you keep running and then you see the end and dig deeper then you ever thought you could and you come alive, double your speed and kick yourself across the finish line where they give you free bananas and you feel really good about yourself.

I think I am still on the upslope of the running curve because I have set a personal record in almost every race I have run. In the last four years, race for race (blossom for blossom), in the longer distances I have improved my time by about 10 minutes each year. Pretty soon I'll finish at the same time I start.

Or maybe pretty soon I will experience a sort of age and experience inflation and will just plateau and let all the colts kick up their heels while I cruise along all sagely, in a deep meditative peace, a running trance.

Either way, the competition will begin dropping out, then dying out... so even in my age group I stand a good chance of rising to the top, even if I never set a personal record again. This is probably the only truly win/win proposition I have ever had in my life.

Anyway, the numbers go like this:
10 miles
14/75 Women age 30-34
79/469 Women overall

I dont know my overall overall place because the race at the finish was segregated by sex.

Any any way, I am pleased with my time. I had to fiddle around at mile 6 because my ears and headphones were so filled with rainwater I couldnt even hear the music (Pointer Sisters I'm So Excited), then I got a three quarter mile long sideache at mile 8 and got passed by like, 15 people so I maybe should have inched up higher but nothing will ever go perfect and everything went about as perfect as it could.


Before I left for home I went to get gas, and noticing the free airpump I decided to fill my tires. All four of them were about 6-8 psi and each one took at least a full minute of air before my car was on its tiptoes and ready to ballerina home.

I have to say though, the road is much slicker then I remember and I didnt feel so safe driving with my knees to change lanes. But on the upside I dont think I used any gasoline on the drive home. None at all.

See! Wheels and tits and no troubles at all!

Friday, April 13, 2007

No planting this weekend because

I am leaving for Medford in just a bit here. I still have to dawdle and overpack and then rush out the door filling my arms with things I wont need like a can of soup and a 24 pack of batteries and a couple reams of typing paper just in case, maybe a few scarves and a kitchen chair. Then, two hours behind schedule just in time for Friday rush hour I should be hitting the road. It is such a struggle to be me sometimes.

I am going to down to visit with my Dad and to run the Pear Blossom 10 mile run. My Dad is running in his first race ever, the 5k run. Yay Dad!

Give a little cheer tomorrow morning at about 7:30am and 10amish, PST.
Thank you.

Monday, April 09, 2007


Saturday we filled pots in the greenhouse while it rained. While it did not rain we planted sunflowers a fistful after a fistful. We finished the seeding of over twenty eight thousand (plus) individual sunflower seeds in garden beds. Immediately the crows moved in. Subtract 20% bird tax, then only 90% are guaranteed to germinate subtract another 10% and we are still in the neighborhood of twentyish thousand sunflowers.

But it rained like crazy so we moved in for part two of Operation Summer Wedding and planted zinnias in fifty count flats all day, and the next... and even today for another three hours.

All together (so far) seventy two hundred zinnias by hand each seed. I plant each one with a little prayer that does not translate well into language but if it did it would go something like this:

GOOD LUCK! (life is good, dont die, please grow)

After all, lets not kid ourselves.... seeds are shockingly small, and for each one a tiny funeral.

I want to spend all my days like this, in the fecund humidity of a greenhouse composing prayers for plants.

Once and awhile to stretch my back, I went outside and took a million and a half pictures of the tulips and azaleas and the ornamental filbert, plus a predictable gazillion pictures of my dog. Wait till you see those pictures. Woah.

In the meantime Clark ran around the perimeter building an irrigation system for our seeds.

And the nursery/graveyard population grew...

.... and grew and grew.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

I like to beat up cancer patients

We started Edison on prednisone today. Prednisone is a catabolic steroid that will bring his cancer, most likely lymphoma, into short-term remission. What short term means I dont know. He is also on a new diet of hamburger and rice, which he thinks is a pretty good deal and might have already gained some weight. We took the bed off the frame and put the box spring and mattress right onto the floor so the jump up and down is more manageable. Life it seems, however short, has taken a turn for the better.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

My Dog Edison

Edison's vet is great. I totally love her. She cant tell me anything, but she tells me nothing knowledgeably and with great kindness. She called me at home, after hours to give me best/worst case scenarios and financial estimates. They have found nothing in the bones but Edison has an enlarged sub-lumbar lymphnode. This is not a common site for a tumor but is commonly cancer meaning the primary tumor is somewhere-else, about $800 dollars away. Best case scenario with aggressive treatment is 2-3mos, sometimes up to 2 or 3 years. We dont even have a guess for the cost of treatment yet.

I am totally ashamed of my priorities. None of this is my money. The entire wedding is being paid for by other people and even I dont have the power to rein in its momentum. I cant believe I even give a shit about ambient lighting or sunflowers.

This evening I thought I would take the time to write about what is going on with Edison because this is first of all my diary. So I was looking at old pictures and it started to really hit me. Like, catering is all business and flat tires are all business and taxes are all business and dog cancer is all business... something to be filed and paid for and it all goes away.

But my dog is sick. He is really really sick and I love him so so so so so so so so so so so much. And after looking at all these pictures I can see how gaunt and gray he has become. He is so tired and weak. Sometimes he stumbles. He is going to die and it really sucks.

Now he gets to sleep on the bed. I dont know if he is too hot or too cold so I try to cover him halfway. In the middle of the night, either because he is too hot or because he is too cold he jumps before I can wake up and lift him down so he stumbles and falls (heartbreaks) and goes off to some cooler or warmer spot.

Now I wish I hadnt fucked off so much in my life and had writ a fancy book and made a gazillion dollars so someone could tell me when Edison needs an aspirin, or how to make him most comfortable or when to call the doctor for his angel wings. But I just have to guess.


s.o.s. send beaver puppets as soon as you are able

Sunday, April 01, 2007


I went running at dusk tonight, through Oaks Bottom towards the lights of the city. I parked above the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge and ran all the way to the Rose Quarter then turned away from the lights and ran back.

I went running down in the darkest places tonight. I ran down by the river between the overgrown brush and the railroad tracks, through the tiny fires of hell. I wore my headphones down the dark path where it curved away from the city listening to 10,000 Virgins sing, down past where the men wait in bushes for the weak and knew I would not hear them when they came for me.


Tonight I am sick and have a fever. Mid-afternoon it was like someone punched me in the stomach so I went home and lay down, cold in a hot bed. My fever is climbing. Those damn kids.

I started writing this post last night after a 10 mile run. I always map my run and leave the browser open for Clark because he is my mother hen.

When he came home I was literally in midsentence creating for myself a massive change in fortune and he yelled YOU ARE SO BUSTED, I KNOW WHAT YOU DID, I KNOW WHERE YOU WERE, WHAT THE F*CK WERE YOU THINKING and I am laughing hysterically because I was just killing myself out of curiosity but then he gets upset and calls me cocky so now I am contrite and will not run in the dangerous dark.

But I am going to post this anyway because I am mad at my mom and want to break her heart a little. Maybe she will buy me a pony.

Back to bed now. I am freezing hot.


About Me