Wednesday, July 30, 2008


While discussing a mix-tape competition at lunch today, the subject of Rickrolling came up. I sheepishly confessed that in high school I'd been a huge fan of Rick Astley and knew all the words to "Never Gonna Give You Up" (plus others, like the classic "Together Forever").

One of my co-workers looked at me incredulously and said, "You're the only person I know who knew who Rick Astley was before Rickrolling started."

I haven't felt this old since Lisa asked me who Cyndi Lauper was.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Worth an Extra Bowl of Ice Cream

The half marathon this morning went really, really well. I finished in 2:15 - a few minutes longer than it took me last time, but I'm still thrilled with the results. Once again this year I got all choked up running through Times Square - TIMES SQUARE! I ran through TIMES SQUARE this morning! - and had to consciously regulate my breathing as I ran across 42nd St. to the West Side Highway.

This afternoon I napped and read the paper and did yoga, all things I would normally do on a Sunday afternoon. Then I ate two bowls of ice cream, because I ran 13.1 miles this morning.

A few months ago Sirrah! asked me if I considered myself a runner. "Nah," I scoffed, "I just run when I'm training for something. I'm not really a *runner*." This morning, however, I really felt like a runner, which was kind of strange and cool. I wonder if that feeling will stick around. I hope so.

8/4/08: Updated with my splits, for posterity:

Mile 1: 10:38
Mile 2: 10:42
Mile 3: 10:29
Mile 4: 9:55
Mile 5: 10:27
Mile 6: 10:20
Mile 7: 9:59
Miles 8 & 9: 20:14 (I forgot to split at Mile 8 in Times Square because I was so engrossed in the awesomeness!)
Mile 10: 10:30
Mile 11: 10:35
Mile 12: 10:31
Mile 13: 9:54
The last 0.1: 1:00

Friday, July 25, 2008

The Grey Shorts Incentive

This weekend I'm running the NYC Half Marathon. It's on Sunday. At 7 a.m. That's right, I'm going to start running 13.1 miles (that's 21.1 km for all you metric-lovahs) at 7 in the MORNING, and hopefully be finished before you wake up. In fact, if I'm quiet, I can slide right back into bed without you even noticing I was gone. I promise to shower first.

The half marathon also marks the halfway point in my training (holy smokes!) AND, with your help, I'll be well over halfway to my goal of raising $4500 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

If you've been thinking about donating but then also thought, "What's in it for me?" well, friend, wonder no more. A few weeks ago I purchased a pair of grey shorts. At the time I wondered to myself, "Self, why don't I have any grey shorts? Only black. Weird, I think I'll go for it!" So I did. Then I ran 8 miles in them. Then I remembered why I don't have any grey shorts, and it has to do with sweat. Unflattering sweat. Still unclear? OK, it's unflattering CROTCH sweat.

If my fundraising tally hits $2500 before Sunday, I will run in grey shorts, AND post a post-race picture. It may not be quite as appealing as other fundraising ploys I've seen, but trust me that it's hilarious, and will likely cause me embarrassment. And aren't hilarity and embarrassment the two key tenets of the internets? Oh, and porn.

Donate here. Or here.

And here:

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

So Tempting

This is why I might have to get cable this fall.

Update: Joe E. Tata is joining the party, too. GOOD TIMES. I just hope Gabrielle Carteris is too busy looking after her grandchildren to sign on.

Friday, July 18, 2008

12 + 99 = 4

Or, Ambition + Temperature = Reality

I had grand plans to run home from work tonight, plans which were thwarted when, about 3 miles into my run, I realized that it was 99°F even along the waterfront, and that crossing the tourist-laden Brooklyn Bridge and running up fume-y Atlantic Avenue in that heat was really going to suck. So I cut my run short after 4 miles.

Fortunately I sweated enough to still feel hardcore.

Training update: I ran 10 miles last Saturday, a totally beautiful run starting and ending in Prospect Park, and across both the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges. The weather that morning was perfect, and I felt great. Tuesday night I had another hill workout, which wasn't exactly *fun* but I (and my calves) survived.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Count to Four

Even if you've already seen this, watch it again. It's so happy-making.

Street Cred

Overheard in the men's room after tonight's Ani DiFranco concert:

"We made it, guys. We earned some major street cred." Pause. "Use it wisely."

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Piperlime Is The New Zappos

I'm a longtime spender at, often ordering 4 or 5 pairs of shoes at once, sometimes with multiple sizes or colours of a particular style. Free shipping! Free returns! More often than not, Zappos upgrades your shipping so that you order one day and the next day you get that magical email: "You have a package - please pick it up at the front desk." I love being able to sort by style, colour, and even heel height. In short, I'm really fussy about shoes. Zappos has been there for me through many changes of season, during which I inevitably become anxious about such decisions as whether or not to show my toes at work (currently yes) and whether I should buy boots with a heel (undecided).

Enter Piperlime, at whose email I scoffed when I first received one a year or two ago. "Oh, that's cute," I thought smugly, "Gap is trying to compete with Zappos with a shoe site. It'll never work." But I didn't unsubscribe, and eventually this year they got me with an email about trendy summer gladiator shoes.

The truth is, no matter how picky I am about footwear, I'm no fashionista, and I'll take all the help I can get. It didn't hurt that I'm keen on sandals that are a) flat and b) cover much of my feet, so the gladiators are already up my alley. But to have some sort of fashion expert reviewing the shoes and giving me suggestions seemed like a good idea, and I ordered a few pairs. When the shoes arrived, Piperlime's packaging charmed me: The inside of the shipping box is printed with Piperlime's sweet limey logo, and the invoice comes tastefully tucked into a lime green envelope. To top it all off, each shoe box came wrapped in brown tissue paper secured with a green lime sticker. Sweet times!

I decided to keep only one of the three pairs, and the other two pairs have been languishing in their boxes for the past month or so, because I vaguely dreaded the process of going to the website to print out a return label (which I keep forgetting to do at work, where I have access to such essential items as a printer). Today I finally decided to at least package them up so I could print the label on Monday and I was delighted to discover a self-adhesive return label IN THE BOX! Zappos, take note.

Now that I have a cool pair of summer sandals, I'm almost looking forward to deciding whether to get mid-calf or knee-high boots this Fall.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

O Canada

In honour of Canada Day, UFF proudly presents a brief installment of Canadianisms: The Expressions Edition.

Expression #1: Had the biscuit

Meaning: Is broken or no longer working (electronics), has gone bad (food), is dead/dying (plants, pets). I read somewhere that during wartime, the mattresses placed outside a first aid tent were called "biscuits," and when a soldier died he was placed on the mattress - hence he'd "had the biscuit." It's more commonly attributed to the host used in the Catholic sacrament for the dying.

Usage Example 1: "My watch stopped working again. I think it's had the biscuit."

Usage Example 2: "These cherries have had the biscuit. I'm going to throw them out."

Usage Example 3: "That hydrangea's had the biscuit. I guess that's what happens when you forget to water it."

Expression #2: Fucking the dog

Meaning: It's not what you think! To fuck the dog simply means to waste time. I don't know the origin because I'm old enough to know better than to Google "fucking the dog," but by all means knock yourself out (and don't blame me if you're forever scarred).

Usage Example: "My hard drive at work finally had the biscuit, so I fucked the dog all day."

Happy Canada Day!