Sunday, July 29, 2007

DYKWIL? Volume 2

1. That in NY, $2 will get you a PBR or a delicious falafel.

2. Concerts on boats. Whoever thought of that should get a raise and a vacation.

3. The Statue of Liberty.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Old and...

I have agreed not to call Lisa "young and impressionable," however, sometimes the fact that I'm, uh, older than her is inescapable.

For example, the other night at a party, she was describing "lockdown" in Ontario high schools (something like this). Someone turned to me and asked if I'd had lockdowns when I was in high school, and Lisa started to say, "Oh no, she's too..." and then caught herself and trailed off.

This afternoon I did use the phrase "young and impressionable," and she reminded me that I'm not allowed to use it, and continued, "And I won't call you old and... out of style!"

Ouch. That? Cuts deep.

For The People

American or Canadian?
Originally uploaded by Kitty LaRoux.

A few days ago, someone arrived at UFF by Googling hot redhead wrapped in american flag.

We at UFF listen to our readers and incorporate your suggestions whenever possible.


Thursday, July 26, 2007


I think this means it's going to be humid:

(84.2°F) And, I [heart] Google.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Do You Know What I Love? Volume 1

1. When you're thirsty and you drink really cold water and you can feel it going down your throat to your stomach.

2. Fresh lemonade (I just discovered this last summer and I can't believe how much I love it) - bonus points if it has some fun herb in it like lavender or mint.

3. Clif Bar's new Maple Nut flavour.

Saturday, July 21, 2007


Here's a list of the sh*t I'm supposed to get done tonight:

1. Make a logo/signage for Dos' business.

2. Design the CD label/packaging for Jillian's upcoming show (that's August 1 at the Hope Lounge in Williamsburg).

3. Bake a delicious cake for Gigi's birthday.

4. Learn PHP.

Instead, I'm blogging (lucky you!) - oh, and as I was leaving the office this afternoon, a certain book that I'd pre-ordered was blocking the door. So maybe I'll get all that other stuff done later tomorrow.

I leave you with the lovely Miss Memphis, who seems to be feeling much better these days:


This afternoon K-Dog and I met at the office to GTD our desks. I threw out boxes of old paperwork and already feel lighter. In the purge, I found a bunch of stuff from the triathlon I did 3 years ago, including a sheet of paper entitled WETSUIT INSTRUCTIONS which includes this gem:

- The more wet you are the better.


Thursday, July 19, 2007

Summer Nights

Summer in NYC is magical, really. There are approx. 900,000 fun things to do, and every year when Time Out arrives with its listing of summer events, I load up my calendar with everything I could possibly want to go to and then at the beginning of the week make some tough decisions. Recent juggling to accomodate many top priority events included buying Manu Chao tickets for Tuesday's show even though I already had them for Wednesday's show because Jillian with a J was playing her first show on Wednesday, and I just couldn't miss that. (Tuesday night training was lost in that shuffle, and Mander happily purchased Wednesday night's Manu Chao tix.)

Tonight I had the pleasure of seeing Ani DiFranco play in Prospect Park. In addition to her music being wonderful, as usual, I am always struck by how much she seems to be enjoying herself on stage. It's almost like she still can't believe that she gets to do this for a living. It makes me giggle to see someone doing something she so clearly loves and feels lucky to be doing.

Watching Ani tonight inspired me. How great would it be to have so much awesome in your life that that sometimes, maybe even often, the happiness bubbles up and makes you laugh out loud? And that the happy makes you grateful and the grateful makes you happy and it's just one big circle of creativity and contentment and, well, awesome?

Everyone clicked through and read the lulu manifesto the other day, right? And you saw this part?

Nature wants us to be mediocre because we have a greater chance to survive and reproduce. Mediocre is as close to the bottom as it is to the top. Be creative. Do one thing a day that scares you.
Let yourself be inspired. Inspire others. Choose the awesome.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Monday, July 16, 2007

Hot and Wet in Central Park

Me, Aaron and Lisa after Saturday's race

More pics here, thanks to Melissa!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Run Your Race

Yesterday morning Lisa and I, along with our co-worker Aaron (who, incidentally totally cracks me up and who is LEAVING in 2 weeks to go get married and then roam around South America and then move to Oregon after which I will never see him again and this fact is causing me a tremendous amount of stress lately), along with our cheerleaders Melissa & Jo, subwayed it up to Central Park for the Naples Park-to-Park 10k. You might have noticed that UFF has been rather devoid of training updates recently, and that's pretty much because training hasn't been going awesomely. I haven't run 10M yet this season, and I've been whining about the heat and making excuses for not sucking it up and getting out there more. After yesterday, that's all going to change.

The race consisted of one counter-clockwise loop of Central Park, starting and ending at 102nd St. Aaron & Lisa & I started out running together. Aaron and I were running beside each other and as we approached Harlem Hill, a guy in a blue shirt asked us how we know each other. The conversation was headed toward being a race-day pickup (no, I'm not flattering myself, Lisa can confirm) with such genius lines as, "You look like a runner." Really? Wow! You mean wearing these running clothes, and running, and surrounded by 10,000 other runners? How flattering!

Aaron pulled ahead at that point and Lisa & I managed to lose Blue Shirt Guy to continue on our merry way. It was a very warm morning, and while I ran the first mile in decent time (considering it included Harlem Hill), I slowed down a bit after that, and when I checked my time at the Mile 4 marker I was not on track to meet my <1 hour (or at least, <10 minute mile) goal.

Something really good happened to me at that point, which is that I relaxed into it. This concept is kind of tough to describe. Last summer when I first did runs longer than 9 or 10M - that is, when I'd be running for longer than 1 1/2 hours, I learned that I needed to settle into the run, and just be present in that moment. In a shorter run, it's OK to get distracted thinking about the next rest station or hill or what's for breakfast afterwards, but in a longer run, more focus needs to be on what's happening right now - taking stock of how I feel in my body and my breath, how strong I feel mentally, etc. When I'm able to find that spot, my body relaxes and I'm much more comfortable running. I found it yesterday, and I'm sure that's what gave me the ability to push myself in the last third of the race, and finish strong in 1:02:39.

Last night when a friend asked me how I was doing vis-à-vis the stuff that's going on in my life, I happily realized that I might finally have found some of that relaxing into my life, the way I find it in running. Here's where I am, right now, and being aware of what's going on in this moment will allow me to make appropriate adjustments to my pace and posture so that I can keep going strong.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

I <3 lulu

lululemon's manifesto inspires me.

Taijitu Cat

Yin Yang
Originally uploaded by Kitty LaRoux.

Important Survey

Friday, July 13, 2007

Just A Girl

At my first job, there were a few women in the office who discussed their hairstyles excessively. It really pissed me off, because I took my job Very Seriously, and didn't want my cred to be undermined by members of my gender discussing their follicular stylings.

Later, when I moved to California, I worked with a woman (for whom I had the utmost professional respect) who had a seriously great haircut. I was new to the area and needed a hairdresser, and fretted for a while about whether, and how, to ask her about her stylist. Finally I said, "Hey, Jen, I have something kind of girly to ask you." She replied, "That's OK, we're girls!"

Good point, Jen.

I've had an ongoing struggle with my own feminity (read: girliness), which has only recently - i.e., in the past two years - come more naturally. I used to fight it tooth and nail - any gender-specific definition or role or stereotype. My friends would crack up at this, and ask me such questions as, "Between you and DLang, who does the cooking?" to which I'd answer, "Well, I do, but that's because I LIKE cooking, not because I'm a girl." Which is true, but it does also happen to fit a certain gender stereotype.

This morning, Lisa told me about a friend who's visiting for the weekend who had already seen fit to make judgy comments about things she deemed girly, in particular, Lisa's application of mascara and quantity of shoes.

L: gillian i have 10 pairs of shoes and all are pivotal
L: 2 running, 1 cleat, 1 your bike shoes
G: I have no judgments if you have 100 pairs of shoes
G: and wear so much makeup that people think you're a whore.
L: birks, those new wanna be birk clogs, brown flip flops, black flip flops
L: thats why I love you most!
L: i was like - well I love flip flips- but I need them in brown and black to match
G: Plus, $2!
L: and she's like "wow, you're such a girl"- in an offensive way! meant to offend!
G: You should have said, yeah, you should see my vagina!
G: It's TOTALLY girly!
L: hahahahahahaha YCMU
In all honesty, mascara is one of my favourite things (and as DLang can confirm, I even listed it as one of the top three things that I can't live without on my online dating profile) and while being a boy certainly wouldn't prevent me from breaking out the Great Lash, it's a plus that it's something that was socially acceptable for my mom to show me how to apply. And having lots of shoes is actually really fun, especially the impractical ones (like these excellent Converse I bought a couple of months ago).

I still hate stereotypes and part of my brain is still screaming, "Anyone can have lots of shoes! Lots of guys have more shoes than I do!" but, hey, so what if it is a girly thing? Like Jen pointed out, I *am* a girl. Which not only means that I cry too easily sometimes and have more difficulty peeing in the woods than my penis-enabled peers, but also that I am comfortable hugging people, get to wear pretty dresses, and get flowers on my birthday.

And, I have boobies that are ALL MINE that I can play with whenever I want, which is way more useful than conveniently peeing in the woods.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Don't Make Me SPAM You

It's already July (how did that happen?), and in less than 4 months, I'll run the NYC Marathon. A few weeks before that, I'll be in SF to run the half at the Nike Women's Marathon (the very race at which I popped my 26.2 cherry last year).

And now, as I mentioned back in April, it's time for me to raise some fundage for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Loyal UFF readers, I implore you: Surely if I can run a combined total of 39.3 miles in two races for this excellent organization, you can throw a little money at the cause? Just think, the more generously you give, the less guilty you will have to feel when you think of me running around Brooklyn on Saturday mornings.

Give here. Or here. Give early and often. Maybe, just maybe, I'll post sweaty post-workout pictures.

Only if you ask nicely, though.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Netflix for Readers?

I read about Bookswim this morning on DailyCandy and I was all gung ho to try it out until I noted the monthly fees. I'm lucky if I can get through a book or two every month, and I usually spend around $10/book (used) on, including shipping. Bookswim is charging $23.99 per month to have 3 books at a time at home, so say I read 6 books every 3 months, that's around $12 more than I'd spend to actually buy the books (used). Details here. I'll be curious to see how well they do.

Love Me Do

Once every few months, when I find myself even more in love with the world than usual, I have a little exercise that I do when I ride the subway. I choose a person at random and imagine that I'm someone who just adores that person, and I list all the reasons that I love him or her. I think of it as a love letter to that person. Sometimes the reasons are things that I can observe, like particularly delicate wrists, or a quickness with the crossword puzzle, or a gentleness with an old person or a child. Sometimes I make things up completely, like how sweet she looks first thing in the morning, or how kind he is to my kids. It's easy once I get started, and I find myself noticing (and creating) wonderful things about complete strangers - not a bad way to start (or end) one's day!

I recently started to think about what I'd want someone to think or say if I were the subject of this exercise. That struck me as kind of a neat thing to wonder about, and I'm kind of surprised that I haven't wondered about it before - that is, for what reasons do I want to be loved? And, how do I want to be loved?

Every so often a friend will do something or even tell me something about him- or herself and I'll think, wow, I love you for that. I love you because you can't stand having your hands get wet when you run. I love you because you smell your shampoo every morning, even though it's the same shampoo you've been using for months and months. I love you because you use the same expressions my parents used when I was growing up. I love you because you act out stories as you tell them. I love you because you use regular expressions in IM.

I haven't come up with definitive answers for the questions of why and how I want to be loved, but I think that the more I can love the people around me, the clearer those will become. For now, I'll just keep practicing.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Waiting For 2 1/2 Hours To Cross The Border Will Do This To You

La Fête du Canada!

P.S. I would lose a LOT of Patriot Points (TM Lisa) if I didn't wish you a Happy Canada Day!

Trivia: What are a Canadian's two favourite colours?

Post your answer in the comments. First correct response wins a box of Kraft Dinner!

Drive My Car

DLang and I just returned from a roadtrip to Montréal, where we attended his friend Isaac's wedding. I'm not sure how it is that spending 18+ hours in a car inspires the heck out of me, but for all the cramped-legs traffic-jammed gas-guzzling environmental unfriendliness, I'll take it. I have so much to share and create that I might burst! Sadly however, I also have a sore throat (maybe from all that singing along to songs on the radio?) which mandates bedtime at a reasonable hour. Just wanted to give you guys something to look forward to, 'cause I know it's been slow around here.

Check back early and often for updates this week. I promise them to you. Absolutely.