in other news

So far this year I’ve run 131+ miles. All but about fifteen of that has been on treadmills, which is tedious, but it does call for a continuous level of effort unlike capricious hills and turns when running outside. My goal is to run 1,000 miles this year, and you can see I’m ahead of schedule. I’ve done a thousand for several years (though I skipped last year and only got somewhere in the 700s). The second year that I did a thousand miles was paced out so that I would turn the odometer during the first half marathon I ever ran, and I did. I reached it at mile 11, which was pretty much my plan so that a) I would definitely run at least that far in the half, and b) I would have run that far, so I might as well finish the remaining two miles. I don’t know what races I’ll have lined up for the fall, though if I stay on task I could wrap up my thousand miles in October at the Kansas City Half Marathon (which I’ve run twice, and the full marathon once). We’ll see.

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I have registered for the Kansas City Trolley Run on April 30. It’s a four-mile, mostly downhill course from the Waldo neighborhood to the Country Club Plaza (our swanky shopping/dining district). I’ve run this at least three times (I’ve lost count) but I didn’t last year because I was “recovering” from the St. Louis Marathon (which is utter B.S. — I could’ve/should’ve run it).

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I currently have five of my stories out in circulation, looking hopefully for berths:

  • “Old School”
  • “A Tree Falls in the Forest”
  • “Twice Blest”
  • “Fire Sermon”
  • “Moving Day”

Only “Old School” is not in the One-Match Fire universe, and “Fire Sermon” is not part of the novel itself.

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I’m currently reading White Jacket*, by Herman Melville. It’s a 500-page novel, and I’m only about fifty pages into it, so it’s obviously too early to judge, but I suspect it’s a story that can be taken at face value rather than plumbed forever for deeper meaning like Moby-Dick, Billy Budd, The Confidence Man, or Bartleby. A friend, whose book discussion groups I’ve been involved in off and on for 25 years, wants to take up The Confidence Man, in light of recent events. His group covered Moby-Dick in monthly sessions lasting three years. It was glorious!

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three

The three grandkids: Kenneth, Emmet, Elaheh. (More on this subject when I’m allowed to talk about it.)

 

 

*I’ve seen it punctuated as White-Jacket, with a hyphen just as the novel Moby-Dick is, as opposed to the whale Moby Dick (sans hyphen). And since the narrator calls himself White Jacket in the novel, I suppose that usage would be hyphenless too.

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