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2013-52 Week 3

When I started the new series of blog posts at the start of the year, I took the subject out of the title since I figured that a weekly blog would be a bit more random and not focus strictly on a single area. I was right for the first couple weeks, but it turns out that this week there is certainly an over-arching theme that applies. Strangely enough, that theme is Time Travel.

Last week I mentioned that I would spend the week living on Mountain Time as I attended an online training. It turns out that wasn’t exactly true, in a way that was much worse than a simple one hour adjustment. While the class was scheduled to start at 7 am my time, pretty much everyone was on the East coast, including the instructor, so the start time was actually 10 am Eastern. That meant I was given lunch breaks around 9:30 am, and then we wrapped at 2 pm local time. Keeping this schedule for an entire week while still going to bed around my normal times (actually a little earlier toward the end of the week) played havoc with my body’s systems. I didn’t know when to be hungry or when to be tired, and investing a bunch of mental energy into the class made the longer afternoon and evening a bit of a mental wasteland. In all, though, it was a good class and the altered time frame turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

A blessing because our next bit of time travel involved running a 5K at Disneyland, at 5:45 in the morning on Saturday. Since my pass had expired on the 13th, we didn’t see much point in getting a hotel for a couple of hours, only to have to get up super early when we could just get up 45 minutes earlier and drive down. Having worn myself out with the training, I actually managed to go to bed in the single digits for the first time in a long time, with lights out around 9:30 pm on Friday night. That was good, since we got up at 3:30 in the morning to make sure we got down there in time (we heard they were closing the gates at 5:15). We got down there with plenty of time to spare, met up with our friends (who were kind enough to pick up our numbers and gear the day before, since we couldn’t make it down there), and proceeded to wait on Main Street in the dark. By the time we had gotten everyone together, we were in the back of mass of people quite a ways from the starting line. If you know your Disney geography, we were by the next to the Penny Arcade on Main Street, and the staring line wound up being all the way up by Matterhorn. Actually, you know what, it’s been three weeks, it’s about time for the return of pictures!

This was the scene in front of us:
Start Crowd

And this was the scene behind us:

As such, of course, we were some of the last people to get started. It was billed as a 5K Fun Run, and that’s exactly what we did, minus a bunch of the running. It took us 54 minutes to cover the 3.1 miles, and the only reason we know that is because I timed it with my Nike+ application so I could get the GPS map from running through both parks.

A GPS map that looks a lot like this:

We had a lot of fun going through the backstage areas of the park. Our group of eight broke up into three sections, with Jess, Belen, and I forming our own little posse, with me as the cameraman and the ladies stopping at various points for pictures. It was nice not to have to worry about time or pace, not that you could have since we were working our way through the ton of people that started ahead of us. Our final pleasant surprise was crossing the line a mere minute before another couple did, and turning around to find the guy down on one knee proposing. Everyone was very excited and happy for them, and cameras popped out from everywhere focused on them. She said yes, and cried . . . a lot. Our group went over to the buffet at Captain Kidd’s across the street, then Jess and I worked our way back to the parking structure and headed home. We decided to stay up for the rest of the day and go to bed at our normal time that night, so we could reset our clocks, and it worked out pretty well.

Another time travel related item actually dealt with, you know, time travel. After finishing my final day of training on Friday, Jess was stuck at work until 5 our time, so I was home with nothing to do for several hours trying to recuperate from the week. I decided to watch a movie from the On Demand section of our Uverse, and went through the recent releases trying to decide what to watch. I settled on Looper, a sci-fi time travel flick that featured Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a younger Bruce Willis. It is far too much to try and explain everything here, as it took me from Burbank to Anaheim on the drive down to Disneyland on Saturday morning to relate everything to Jess. I have apparently had my attention span shrunk over the years, as my main complaint with many movies recently was that they were too long and could have been edited down a bit. Looper clocked in at just under two hours, and there were certainly times it felt like it was dragging. The last two minutes, however, provided a jolt (and one of my patented figure out the twist 30 seconds before and swear under my breath) that really made the whole experience come together, so it went from “okay” to “worth it.” Don’t think too hard on the time travel aspects, though, paradoxes suck. Definitely not for the kiddies, though, intermittent swearing, lots of shooting, and a minute or so of bare breasts (you know, from the hitman in love with a stripper angle). Actually, speaking of the kiddies, the kid that is the focus of the back half of the movie certainly wins points as being perfectly cast for going from angelic to demonic and back again in a heart back. Creeeepy.

Another bit of time travel last week featured Los Angeles heading back to the Ice Age. I don’t remember the last time that all the standing water on the ground had iced over to the point where piles of sand were placed all over campus to avoid the slipping hazards. I actually took a couple pictures for documentation of this rare event.

I don’t know if you can tell, but this is a puddle with a layer of ice on top:
Ice Puddle

This one is even better, as since we’re not used to the ice in L.A., we don’t turn off our water fixtures overnight, so we get cool patterns like this:
Ice Fountain

All right, that’s probably enough on the time travel theme, time to wrap up the loose ends for the week so I can go to bed. I actually have to go to work at the normal time tomorrow, you know? First, one last funny picture that has been floating around my phone for a week or two now. I was out picking up some items so Jess could put away our Christmas gear and one of the things she needed was glue sticks for a glue gun, as she found a ornament storage mechanism (on Pinterest, of course) which was more space efficient that involved gluing short Chinet cups onto cardboard. I went to Target to get the cups and looked to see if they had any glue sticks. I didn’t find any, but what I did find was this sign in the craft area.

Glue Gun

So, apparently they were out of letters with self adhesive backs, but figured that they’d be happy to sell you a glue gun so you can make your own adhesive letters, as well as glue whatever else your little heart might desire. It amused me greatly.

Finally, a quick update on one of my resolutions. I haven’t made the time for it I would like yet, so my progress has been slower than desired, but I selected and started reading my first book for the year. I’m currently reading “The Signal and the Noise” by Nate Silver, a very interesting book on predictions and how most are bad but some are good and how we can learn more about determining which is which. I also already have the second one picked out, it would have been the first but it didn’t com out until the 15th and we’re going to the Los Angeles release/book signing for it on Friday. The second book is the Fifth Assassin by Brad Meltzer, and I cannot wait to read it. That should take me through mid-February and keep me well on track for my reading resolution. I’ll have a full update in the next week or two, as well as a bit of a book review for each as I finish them.

All right, until next week everyone. Oh, one last thing, in response to Stephen’s comment last week, the Android box I got for the TV is a Kaser NetPC2, and I haven’t played with it too much, but so far I am pleased with the results. Okay, now I’m done.

Weight: 230 Loss: 0 lbs – Running Yearly Mileage: 33.2 miles (+16.2 miles) Last year-to-date: 6.5 miles – Words-to-date: 6170 (+1607)

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  1. Mom said

    Hi Matt! Enjoyed the post!

    Naturally, I zero in on the fact that using a glue gun will no longer allow for repositionable letters.

    Love, Mom

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