Sunday, February 01, 2009

Dedication on Super Bowl Sunday

Another pretty nice day here in MN.

This morning it was 27 degrees for my run. The skies were clear, and there was a fairly stiff breeze, but nothing to quibble about. Yesterday's heatwave (I ended up seeing 46 degrees in my neighborhood!) melted off a lot of snow pack on the trails, so there was some nice bare pavement to run on in some areas.

Other spots where there had been standing water as a result of the melting were incredibly slick. I took my time in those areas! I ended up doing 7 miles on what was an enjoyable run with yet another gorgeous sunrise over the lake.

There has been a change in bird behavior. Yesterday I noted that the chickadees were doing their "fee-bee" call (they were still doing it today), which is generally heard only in the spring or fall. Today I heard the cardinals singing, as I did yesterday, but they were doing their piercing, descending call (the bird book describes the call as "what-CHEER! what-CHEER!") I have not heard the cardinals do this in months. This too is something of a sign of spring.

However, I am not buying it. We have a long way to go before the trees get their leaves and the flowers start blooming. I think the birds were just enjoying the nice day. Either that, or the cardinal is just excited that his team made it to the Super Bowl! ;-)

When I returned home from my run, I entered the apartment through the main doors. Two of the caretakers were standing in the lobby. They are really nice folks who always say hello.

One of them greeted me and said, "You know, you really need to write a book about your dedication!" They see me all the time when I come through the lobby after finishing up a run, and I think they think I am crazy for running year round, especially in the winter weather (even though today was pretty nice).

I told them both, "I just love running in the winter. It is always nice and cool!" My comment completely cracked them up. We wished each other a good day, and I headed to my apartment.

I thought it was kind of neat that they noticed. But I don't know that it is so much about dedication as it is about enjoyment. It is fun to get outside, see the sunrise, and observe the birds changing up their vocalizations. The act of running is fun in and of itself, but it also takes me to the places where I can see and hear these things. And there is always something new to hear and see.

In the movie, "The Rookie," Dennis Quaid play the character of Jim Morris, a former baseball player turned teacher and coach who refused to give up on his dream of playing in the major leagues. Quaid has line in the movie where he says to another teammate:

"You know what we get to do today, Brooks? We get to play baseball!"

I don't play baseball. But I do get to go running.

Now I am am simply kicking back and preparing for the Super Bowl. I am firmly entrenched in the "I don't care who wins; I just want to see a good game" camp, and I really hope the commercials are better this year than last. :)

One thing I have decided; I had ESPN on in the background while I was doing some prep work in the kitchen. There is far too much pre-game coverage when you have to fill time with Boomer quizzing Cris and Keyshawn about how many tons of chips are consumed by Americans while watching the Super Bowl, and when you have Snoop Dogg rapping next to NFL analyst, Chris Mortenson. Ugh. Thank goodness golf is on soon!

Anyhow, the Super Bowl chili is simmering as I type this, and it's going to be spicy. Speaking of spicy, here is last night's kung pao chicken. I think my nose is still running from all the chilies I put in it! :)

Kung POW!



Until next time,

Jean
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