Archive for the ‘Running’ Category

Running Month in Review: July 2018   Leave a comment

 

“On The One” Brolly Stand, Ruislip, Middlesex 21 July 2018

 

Total for July: 0 miles but trying to live life On The One, regardless.  Only four new pubs added to the list, but we revisited some cracking old pubs in my convalescence.

As of this post, the longest run I’ve done since 02 June is down a rail platform, two sets of stairs separated by the tunnel at Harrow-on-the-Hill Station (and the tunnel) and partway down another platform (maybe 100 meters all in).  Physical therapy continues, now 8½ weeks into at least 13 (and possibly 26) of weights and yoga.  Still in pain, but much more bendy.

 

 

So, I am moving around slow enough to notice different things (like the Bootsy Collins Boot-shaped Umbrella Stand) than when I was running 40-50 miles per week prior to crippling myself.  For instance, this is not the 2nd sighting of the Red Shorts Blue Shirt phenomenon (nor even was the first mention of it in this diary amongst the first 10).  But, now I see it everywhere.

 

 

Granted, some things were only noticed after a prolonged and complete stop.  One day, my bus to work came to a halt here:

 

 

Listening to some podcasts from news outlets in the States (da fuck is wrong with your government, kids?), concentrating on some ligament stretches the cramped bus seating allows, and studying the scene out my window, the scene, below, flashed at varying pace and intensity until it dissolved away and I found myself studying a similar landscape near Dahlonega, GA for a few moments.  A lorry zoomed past and rocked the bus and me back to my documentable location and I noticed there actually was a strobe light in my field of view:

 

 

Varying from 90 to 160 flashes per second (faster than which it blurs to a mostly continuous glare), the polished fins on this vent pipe reflected the sun for an instant as it past by.  The fins are twisted slightly and as the morning progressed, the flash point creeped downward .  I’m so fucking bored, not running and all, that this was one of the highlights of the month:

 

So much so that I didn’t even bother to get a decent photo of the item.  Kind of like this:

 

 

Not hungry when we passed it this weekend, I shortlisted this chippy (for the sign, alone) in West Drayton for a fish lunch on the run if I ever run again:

 

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Posted July 31, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in art, Running

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Running Month in Review: June 2018   1 comment

 

A colleague introduced me to a lab visitor as a runner at the beginning of June.
“No, sorry. I’m afraid I gave it up.”
This news seemed to shake his grip on all that is holy in this world. “Really? When?”
“A couple of days ago.”
“Oh, so just a break, then?”
“No. When something is hurting you that much, no matter how deep your love for it you have to walk away.”

Persistent pain and weakness in my right leg led me to accept, after the loop run through South Harrow and Rayner’s Lane on June 2nd, that a period of enforced rest coupled with some targeted physical therapy was long overdue (my GP, also a keen runner, agreed and gave me the proper names so I could say more than, “hurt here, make stop, please”). It appears, more than anything, to be a strain or tear of the TFL combined with Iliopsoas Syndrome and a tight IT Band (ITBS).  Now 4 weeks into an initial 6 week recuperation, I can report….

The convalescence has also put a major dent in the number of pub visits I have to report as well as the amount and quality of the sightseeing available to me.  Hopefully, I can slowly return to running after Bastille Day (that will be at 6 weeks), but the tendon may need 12 (and maybe up to 26) weeks of low load conditions.

Pub visit write-ups are really taking a hit.  Of the first 94 pubs this year through the end of May, 88 were associated with one run or another; none since then has been on a run and as a result I can only hit a new pub if it happens to be nearby.  I guess my liver and kidneys are getting a well deserved rest, as well, but fuck ’em: we’ve been at war against one another too long for this truce to last.

Stats for June: 9.8 miles in two runs and approximately 45 hours of stretching performed along with a far too gradual shift in diet to complement the change in exercise regimen.

 

I am depressed:

 

Posted June 30, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Running

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Shepherds Bush to Acton Tourism   1 comment

 

Friday after work run:  Started at the Shepherds Bush stop of the coach from Oxford and moseyed on up to the Queens Tavern.  As I have every other time I’ve tried to go here (this must be the sixth or seventh effort), I checked the opening times and found them to be from noon til 11 or midnight.  As it has been every other time, it was closed.  The website went down since last Friday and the WhatPub entry tells the story: the pub is only open on game days, now.  Shit.

Whilst grinding my teeth over this wasted choice of an urban route over much nicer ones, I noticed the Batman Dental Surgery.  I only hope that if you explore deeper in the estate you’ll find the Black Widow Marriage Counseling offices or the Swamp Thing Garden Centre.

 

 

 

This poor choice of font size resulted in an unfortunate and confusing presentation of the team slogan. It SHOULD, of course, read, “Come On Your Arses.”  Or, maybe it is as simple as bad spacing and should be, “Come On Your’s” (with a troublingly spurious apostrophe).  No one puts the effort into graphic design nor proofreading, anymore:

 

 

 

 

This Bed & Breakfast, not far from the stadium, is probably out of my price range:

 

 

 

 

I continued.  The other planned pub stop was also closed, I think.  I decided there wasn’t enough spring in the mattress to assist in clearing the hoarding, and ran on, eventually finding the Wishing Well pub near East Acton station (write-up soon).

I’ve had more (and less) successful runs.  At least it was hot and the start of the Early May Bank Holiday Weekend.

 

 

Blast from my desert past   Leave a comment

 

Ah, nostalgia.  A friend in Tucson sent a link to an old (09 March 2007) article in the Tombstone Epitaph that features a bunch of familiar (to me) names (both hash handles and the names their mothers’ gave ’em).  Good stuff even if the description of hashing presented is not accurate (even some of the specific local traditions get scrambled).

The plunger Meat Grazer is drinking from is The Shit award, given to some egregious offender of hash norms to carry at the next hash.  That’s me with it in the next photo (I think I got it, this time, for signing The Book upside down and on the wrong page — the Huachuca Hash takes the book very seriously).

About ½ of the attendees at this run were either veterans/active duty military and about ½ were academic professionals.  Some of us were both.  Good times…I reckon; I don’t really remember this run.

 

 

Posted May 9, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Made Me Laugh, Running

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Southend-On-Sea, Essex: Sights on a Cold, April Day Out   1 comment

 

I had no plan.  Jackie’s mom’s funeral would be held in Tennessee later in the day and, upon waking and stretching for a run, I decided to catch the train out to Southend to jog, drink, and think good thoughts about Jackie and her brother and all the aunts, uncles, and cousins donning mourning outfits and heading to the cemetery.  A good plan, I reckoned, for no plan.

 

 

Southend Station had some nice details and, paint-job-that’s-overdue-some-touch-up notwithstanding, even the dog shit containers were ornate:

 

 

Queen Victoria (or, using her Essex name, “Lefty” Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, as this statue suggests) looks out toward the sea.

 

 

Hash House Harrier (I believe it is the Full Moon kennel) markings turned up on the cliffs:

 

 

I took a run break and paid for the privilege of walking the pier.

 

 

A paddle boarder in the distance worked against the retreating tide, while some lazier pier denizens took the train.

 

 

 

I thought there would be a pub at the end, but it is really just a Life Boats rescue station (although there is a snack bar).

 

 

Returning to terra firma, it was time to find a pub.

 

 

The cliffs elevator:

 

 

The Kurzaal holds a bowling alley:

 

 

Seaside arcades in older cinemas line the seaside walk.

 

 

Still Life on Victorian Keystones:

 

So, the mourning run finished after 4 pubs (write-ups are slowly being crafted), some eels, and a plate of seafood pasta.  “What have any of these got to do with one another or the stated intent of this trip,” you ask?  I counter, “it’s Southend…nothing has to work together.”  Case in point.  The billboard for the “Sea Life Adventure” features a meerkat — a relative of the mongoose from the Kalahari Desert and no Sea Life, at all:

 

 

Posted May 5, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Obits, Running, Tourism

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Sights around Bushey   2 comments

 

The Sunday run was short and sweet with 4 pub stops over the course of about 4 miles back-and-forth and round-and-round Bushey, a little village completely covered with pubs a mile or so south of Watford.

 

 

 

The main sights, I guess, were the pubs which are being written-up (or shall soon be). I was impressed with the spiritual life of the town, though, especially the icon of Darrel from the Walking Dead (in drag, above) on the side of the Catholic Church.

The Methodist Church is also odd: look at the steeple and the way they seemed to have built it and then built a brick tower around it about halfway up its full height.

 

 

Looking for a quiet place to unload some used beer, I wandered into the town Rose Garden. This was absolutely lovely, but too occupied for my Trump-Russian-prostitute impression. I continued the trek to a final pub (indoor potties!) and called it a day.

 

Posted April 27, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Running

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Brixton-Herne Hill-Tulse Hill-Clapham Run to De-Stress   1 comment

 

At 30°C (86°F), it was the hottest day of the year and, based on past experience, that may still be true when the year ends in 8½ months.  This is the sort of weather Jackie misses most about the South: humid, hot, sultry.  Unfortunately, she was on a plane to Chattanooga where the temperatures were peaking at about 10°C (50°F).  Her mother was dying from congestive heart failure and it was down to days if not hours and only one of us could afford to go.  So, after work I went for a bit of a South London tour to kill time until her flights landed and I could check in with her again.

 

 

Part of the trip was to visit a buddy of ours in Brixton who has shown real concern, sympathy, and interest in this sad situation.  He also, generously, left me with some traditional “sorry for your losses” provisions before rushing off to pack for a weekend wedding (something of a circle of life thing going on there, I guess).  I ran off past Brockwell Park and through a wooded section of trail a bit above but adjacent to a pavement and street.  I picked up the bottle cap as an alternative to the coin I have used since Cambridge only because I couldn’t find the coin.  It turned up in my back pack later that evening (phew!) but in the meantime the bottle cap sat next to a tree and was not necessarily covered in dried piss and did an exemplary job.

 

 

The park was rammed and I moved toward Tulse Hill to seek smaller crowds.  I had the White Hart, above, in mind but found it as dead as my cat and, soon, mother-in-law.  That may sound a bit harsh, but I should point out that in the same way that Edie wasn’t the best cat in the world, neither was Jackie’s mom the best m-in-l in the world; to be fair, I’ve seen much worse cats and at least Jackie’s mom wasn’t a heavily armed, drug-and-drink addled, violent psychopath like my mom (I definitely got the better deal of this family merger).  A further caveat: I realise that I’m using “drug-and-drink addled” as a bad thing, here…unnatural; strange days indeed.

 

 

After the second pub of the run (write-up soon), it was getting dark and I decided to jog to the station, 50 meters away.  The day caught up to me, though, and somehow I missed the station completely and wound up running through the twilight as far as Clapham Common.  Just before the station, there, I spotted a bistro called Sequoia — which ties Eastern Tennessee and North Georgia together and to this final leg of the evening’s journey.

On the way home, I stopped at a Sainsbury’s to pick up some supper; Wild Turkey was on deep discount (I think stores are trying to clear out their pre-trade wars bourbon before the new tariffs go into effect) so I loaded up.  Overall, not too bad of an evening considering, you know, the death and demoralisation.

 

 

 

Posted April 22, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Running

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