The Ditch Carp of Democracy

Tam over at View from the Porch has linked to a great PJ O'Rourke article and I have to post it here so I can get back to it later and work on memorizing some of the great lines!

Go check it out, you will get a kick out of it.



Bloomsday 20009

James at The Next Chapter left a comment wondering where I was and I reckon I need to tell you about my adventure over the weekend!

Brigid and I went to Spokane to see her family and to participate in the Bloomsday 2009 event. It is a HUGE deal in Spokane - over 50,000 people participate in the 12 km run/walk and they come from all over the world.

The course is fairly short at 7.45 miles but dang, it was a long, tough walk for me and probably for Brigid too - she usually runs the course and she had to be patient and amble along with me! Here is a link to the course map.

It is quite an amazing sight to see 50,000 people in downtown Spokane - it was the 33rd running of the race so they have it pretty well choreographed. The elite runners start first and run the course in a little over 34 minutes and were probably finishing up as our group moved towards the starting line. After that, the rest of the participants are grouped by their estimated time for completion so we started a little after 9 and headed out with the orange group - some folks were walking and others took off at a run.

The course wound its way through downtown and then down into the valley and out into the country. Here is a course elevation map to give you an idea of the ups and downs we had to deal with:

Doomsday Hill is what everyone absolutely hates and celebrates the most - it was tough but I just put my head down and charged up the hill as steady as I could and it was over quickly. The rest of the walk into town was great and the participants were all in a great mood after dealing with Doomsday Hill.

At mile 6 or so, we were passed up by a group of soldiers from Ft. Lewis who had their full gear and kit - 55 pound packs on their backs! Kind of put things in perspective and my feet didn't hurt as much after seeing those soldiers!

It was a great experience to cross that finish line and the walk to get the coveted Bloomsday 2009 Finisher t-shirt was awesome. I am already looking forward to next year and bettering my time!


Free Books!!!!

Saw this mentioned in a comment over at Home on the Range - a great selection of books from Baen Books on the Baen Free Library site.

I really like the feel of a book in my hands and the convenience but heck, these are FREE BOOKS! I have started on Eric Flint's "1632" series using the olde fashioned papyrus version but will check out some of the other authors and titles listed on this site.