Super Saturday

The Frank Colden Invitational took place yesterday. This is generally a pretty big meet that takes place at Ursinus. For whatever reason it wasn’t that big this year but it was still fun to watch. It’s an open meet so it’s know for having Alumni come back and race. This year Dave, Seth, and Imbemba all ran the mile against each other. There was a little bit of training and a lot of trash talk going on in the months leading up to it. The race did not disappoint one bit. Brett’s tactic was to sit and kick and Dave’s tactic was to run away from Brett early on. They both said that they were expecting something around 5:20 so that was the pace we could expect. There was maybe 10 people in the heat total and Dave got out fast when the gun went off. There were 2 kids in the heat who dominated everyone else but that didn’t matter. Brett moved up right behind Dave and they hit the 800 in 2:36. At this point Dave started pulling away. The gap was opening up and you could see the strain on Brett’s face. His pace was slowing down while Dave held strong. Brett entered the bell lap roughly 10-15 meters behind Dave, it all came down to whether or not he had a kick. Brett started going and you could see he was gaining on him. With 100 to go he was in full sprint and with a little less than 50 to go he blew by Dave and finished 2 seconds ahead in a final time of ~5:13. It was a great race and really fun to watch. Seth came in at ~ 5:38 but his marathon specific training hindered his mile performance.

The meet was over by 2 and the alumni stayed for the fun. Len also showed up but didn’t run in the race. We stated drinking and playing Guitar Hero and eventually moved on to playing Thumper which was a blast. Our common room table was taken from us by facilities so we couldn’t play pong or anything until later. Fortuantely Mehmet gave us his table so by 6 or so we had a table. The game of choice was flip-cup. The party was small at the time but the game was going great. At one point I hocked a loogie but was too far away from a trash can or anything so I opted to spit it into my cup. I drank the cup the next round and people were disgusted. Someone decided to take this a step further and challenge me by saying that I wouldn’t do it with my own urine. I thought about it for a second and then went aside, peed in the cup, and came back ready for the round. People were in disbelief and said that it wasn’t piss in the cup. It took one whiff from Mark to confirm that it was piss. The round started, I did the deed, and that was that.

I blacked out a little bit and don’t entirely remember people coming over. I got into a debate with Emily and Liz about whether I was blacked out or not. I wrote down a 4 digit number and told them I would remember it tomorrow. I vaguely remember this and almost guessed the number right this morning but apparently I’m out $10 now, we’ll see about that. For whatever reason a blacked out John Ryder smashed he laptop into 100 little pieces in a fit of rage. It was quite a spectacle. After that a bunch of us went to Shreiner for whatever party was going on there. We hung out for a while and then at some point went back to the suite. Normal weekend things were going on and I was talking to a few people. At some point we got the idea for late night lower so a few of us went. The special was a buffalo chicken wrap or something, too spicy for me so I just munched some popcorn instead. It was about 1:30 at this point and we headed back to the suite. It was pretty much empty and the party was over.

We woke up this morning to an absolutely trashed suite. There’s beer cans everywhere, dirt all over the floor, and the bathroom is an absolute wreck. There was beer all over my bookbag which isn’t good and broken glass everywhere courtesy of Ryder. It’s quite the shithole right now but I’m getting used to that happening. Tonight is obviously the Super Bowl so I’m getting my work done early. I suppose I might drink a little bit to night but nothing crazy. The line is -3 for the Pats and although I hate the Giants I would probably bet on them.

In the Public

I’m aware that I’m not perfect. I do things sometimes that are dumb, stupid, questionable, regrettable, etc. Doing them in the confines of my suite or when I’m just with my friends is one thing, but when I do them in public it’s another thing. Here are a few things I’ve noticed about myself.

Nose picking – I would venture to say I pick my nose more than the average person. I would venture to say I pick my nose my than anyone I know. I’m not proud of this but it’s a sub-conscious thing at this point that I do all the time. We’ll be sitting at dinner with the girls team and I’m just picking away. The funny thing is that I think I’m being sneaky about it and that no one can tell. When other people pick their nose I like to think I can tell so if that’s true, it’s probably pretty obvious when I do it. I don’t know why, but for whatever reason I like to have a squeaky clean nose. I also really enjoy picking monster boogers out of my nostrils.

Check my fly – On very rare occasions, I forget to zip my fly up. Whenever I notice that it’s down I just wonder how many people saw it. Over the past couple of years though I’ve developed a bit of a habit of checking my fly. This is a sure fire way to make sure you don’t look like a total fool if you walk into class with it unzipped. However there’s a down side to this. Most of my shorts have a little flap thingy over the zipper so you can’t really see the it. In order to check, you have to move the flap aside and then look. Well reaching your hand down by your johnson and staring at it simultaneously is a good way to draw attention to yourself. I move the flap over, tilt my head and stare down at my fly to see if it’s up or not (most of the time it is), then try to carry on as if nothing happened. I don’t know how many people actually notice this but it’s a good way to make yourself look like a jackass.

Eating Habits – I went to get my lunch today after class. I was all alone so I walked my food back to my room. I had a cheesesteak and fries in one hand and my drink in the other hand. For whatever reason the fries looked so delicious that I thought I had to eat some right away. The entire walk back I was holding my little basket of food up to my face and picking fries out one by one with my mouth. I didn’t look very cool doing this but I just didn’t really care. Another thing I do is eat the salads I make by hand. I never put dressing on my salads so this isn’t that gross but picking up spinach leaves, broccoli, carrot sticks, and cucumbers with your hands isn’t that cool either. The final thing I’ve started doing is taking sunflower seeds out from Wismer. Because they’re so small and difficult to pick up, I just hold the bowl up to my face and stick my tongue in the bowl to get the seeds while walking back from dinner. Girls must love this.

Farting – In my opinion, farting is probably the one thing that always was funny and always will be funny. The thought of a really smelly burst of air coming out of someones butt hole is just hilarious. Now, I don’t fart in public. If we’re walking back from the library or lunch or something, I’ll fart within earshot of only the friends I’m walking with. However, to make the fart funnier I almost always stop walking, lift my one leg off the ground, get the opposite arm in motion, and rip one. If anyone was watching this it would be completely obvious that I was farting. I don’t bother checking to see if anyone is watching though because a fart is just too funny to pass up sometimes. Girls must love this even more.

Mom

When the owner/sponsor of this blog informs me that it’s failing, it means I need to start blogging again. It’s like if your boss at work says “You’re doing a pretty shitty job lately” you would probably start working harder.

Anyway, when I write a blog, I rarely think about who will be reading it and how they will react. My analytics tells me that I get about 1500 views from 300ish unique visitors. That 1500 is clearly inflated because I know people like Mark and Brett visit this blog multiple times on a daily basis regardless of what’s going on. Of that 300, I have no idea how many are people I know versus people who randomly stumble upon a picture Hayley Williams. I generally assume that if you’re not someone I converse with on a daily basis, you probably don’t read my blog.

Every now and then however I’ll talk to someone who I don’t normally talk to and they’ll mention something about my blog. My general reaction is “Wow, you read my blog?” There are people who follow my blog that I would never guess but for whatever reason they poke their heads in every now and then just to see what’s going on. On the other hand, there are people I know extremely well like Mike and Wacker who never visit this ever. I don’t know what Mike doesn’t visit but I do know that Wacker doesn’t like giving me that satisfaction of boosting my views, childish. The point is, it just goes to show that I don’t know who’s reading and how my post will effect them.

I bring this up because the past week or so my mother has been texting me daily. Ever since I learned about my injury and had a few terrible blog posts in a row, she got so worried that she felt the need to text me pretty much every night and inform me. When I made the post Fat Sam, she texted me within 10 minutes of me posting it saying “Hi sam-i hope you are feeling ok and are not too fat. Love you.” This text in particular had me cracking up so thank you mom for brightening up my day a little bit. I wasn’t sure if my mom read my blog. I figured she wouldn’t want to read about me getting blacked out drunk every weekend but despite that she tunes in frequently. She texted me last night asking if I was okay and I didn’t text back. Sorry mom. I know it’s your job to worry about me but I’m doing okay. I was in the library doing work just like you thought and couldn’t be distracted.

Anyway, it just gave me something to think about. I might write future blogs that piss people off or make them think I’m an asshole and I won’t even know or think twice about it. If you’re posting your thoughts up here daily though (more like weekly for me lately) you’re bound to make some enemies. They can stop reading though if they don’t like what they see.

Weak

This is a weak way out of a blog post but I haven’t been able to think of anything to write the past few days.

I thought this was hilarious.

*Edit, I have since found out that the video has requested that Youtube disable embedding so this was a complete failure.

Fat Sam

I know I’ve been slacking on the posting as of late. Between the injury, the weekend, and the lack of creativity, I just haven’t had the motivation or ideas to write a good blog. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’ve got any good ideas right now but I have to post something.

A big trend this year at school is making names for people. You place an adjective or noun or whatever in front of a persons name and then say their name. For example, Mustache Mark, Lobster John, A-hole Andy, Piles Pane, etc. My nickname in the beginning of the year was Sleepy Sam because I slept a lot. Since I’ve gotten back for this semester my name has changed. I am now Fat Sam. Since I haven’t consistently in 2 months I’ve unfortunately put on some weight. In the summer when I was running 80-100 miles a week I weighted 135-140. Since I’ve gotten back I’ve weighed myself twice and the results were not ideal. The one day was 151 and yesterday was 148. This is the fattest Sam has ever been, hence the nickname. I don’t feel any fatter and I can’t notice it by looking at myself but apparently it’s there. I personally like to think that since I’ve been doing a lot of core everyday that I’ve just put on 10-15 pounds of core strength but that’s probably not the case. Anyway, Fat Sam is kind of funny when you think about it but in however many months when I get back to running, well it’s just going to take a lot longer than normal to get back in shape and down to racing weight.

Mark and I are watching my first ever video blog right now and I’ve been talking about making another one. I don’t really have too much material off the top of my head but I think they’re pretty fun/funny so I’ll try to get one up. We’ve contemplated doing a drunk one on a Saturday night but that would probably just be offensive, but we’ll see. If anyone has ideas please let me know.

Also, to make this post less depressing than the last couple, here’s the best 5 second clip of a video I’ve ever seen. If you think you know one better I dare you to post it.

 

Let the bad luck continue

Yesterday was sort of a success. I completed the power hour at 1:00 and didn’t throw up. Wacker on the other hand wasn’t so lucky. At about 12:45 he puked up what looked like blood in the toilet. After 7 and a half Boxer Lagers in the hour I was pretty bombed. Wacker and I both somehow lost our ID’s before the power hour even started which sucked but fortunately we got into brunch anyway. I wasn’t blacked out but I was really drunk. I couldn’t tell you how long we were there and I could only give a general idea of what we talked about. We walked back and I followed the plan accordingly. I bonged a beer and then took a much needed 2 hour nap. Wacker, Ryder, and I went to Target at 4 to buy some duct tape so we could decorate the suite. We got back and I made a very poor “ZBT’ on the wall in red duct tape.

The guys got back from the meet at like 6 and I was not feeling good. It honestly felt like I was hung over. The party started at 8 so I had to make sure I was ready to go. I took another 30 minuteish nap in Mark’s bed which I hoped would od the trick. I woke up at around 7:30 and had to get ready for the party. I didn’t feel up to drinking yet but once everyone got here we started up flip cup. It was a good game to play because drinking in small doses like that is much easier. One game hit me the wrong way and I found myself over the stall spitting trying to hold back vomit. I was in there for about 5 minutes and luckily held in the barf. The rest of the official party was filled with Kings and dancing in the common room.

At 10 the party opened up to everyone else. Nothing in particular happened that was super fun or funny except for Wacker throwing up. I stayed up late and returned to my bed thinking everything was fine. Mark came back this morning and as we investigated our room we found, or didn’t find, a few things. He was going to go out for his run but said “where’s my iPod?” I said I didn’t know and that he could borrow mine. Little did I know mine was missing too. Now it was possible that we misplaced them but the icing on the cake was when I checked my wallet and there was no cash in it. Fortunately I only had $20 or so in there but they took my $2 bill which pissed me off. Wacker was also robbed of about $100. So the bandits got away with 2 iPods with a net value of about $200 and then another $120 in cash.

Obviously this happened to me before at Valley Green but I really can’t express how pissed off this makes me. Some guy or guys just came in here with full intent to steal and did exactly that. What is wrong with people? Anyone could just come in and steal stuff but since your stuff could also be stolen, you don’t do it. If people just keep stealing the whole system will far apart. It pissed me off so much that someone is walking around probably really proud of themselves thinking “Man I have all this free money now, what should I spend it on?” I don’t know who to be mad at but it’s just such a dick move. I don’t really hold grudges or anything but I would wish very bad things upon this person and not feel bad if any of them happened. People like that just need to be weeded out of society.

I put Karma Police up as the song when I wrote the injury blog because I always said that I never get injured but I did not deserve to get robbed again. Not that I deserved to get hurt, but still, you get the point.

Trying to move on

Obviously I’m a little upset as of late but the blog must go on. I have a few ideas for posts so I’ll get those up hopefully in the next couple days. As for now, I’ll post on the big festivities that are going down today.

It’s 12:30 right now and Wacker and I are 30 minutes into a power hour. The game plan was to do a power hour at noon, take a break until like 5 or so, then maybe do another power hour. Everyone is at the track meet today except for me, Wacker, and John. We figured we’d try to have a good time despite the fact that none of us can run.

The Men’s track team is partying with a real sorority tonight, Tau Sig. For those who don’t know, the suite has been posing as the fraternity ZBT for the past year or so. Tonight we will solidify our spot as a real fake frat. We’re partying with a real sorority so that has to give us some credibility. When they emailed us they even said we want to party with men’s track/ZBT. Starting at 12 when the party starts at 8pm sounds like a formula for blacking out. I don’t really know what I expect from myself or from the party but I figure being drunk throughout the day can only be fun.

Surprisingly enough, I’m not 100% devastated from being out for the rest of the year. Obviously yes I’m upset and disappointed and pissed off and just keep thinking about what could have been, but I’m actually handling it better than I thought. I remember writing a post a while back that I would have no idea what I would do if I was hurt. Running is my a huge part of my life and I couldn’t imagine not being able to run but now that I’m in that scenario, yeah I’m not happy but I’m not on the verge of suicide like I thought I would be. I also claimed that I never get hurt and then look what happened, I got hurt. THIS TOO SHALL PASS.

Diagnosis

I went to the doctor yesterday and progress has been made. The first thing he asked when I went in was “Hey, did you get my message? I tried to call you about 6 weeks ago but I couldn’t reach you.” I foolishly gave them my home phone instead of my cell phone so no I did not get the message. He said that they were going to suggest I get a CAT scan on my back to check for something or other. Anyway, I gave them an update on how I was doing and what was going on with my back. They told me to schedule the scan and keep doing what I was doing. I had nothing better to do yesterday so I just stayed and got the scan right after I saw the doctor. He prescribed some medicine which is an anti-inflammatory and a pain killer to help out. Best case scenario they said was the original diagnosis, a muscle strain and a few weeks of rehab etc. would fix it. Worst case was a bony defect or something like that, essentially a stress fracture and movement of the bone I think is what he told me.

Well I was sort of optimistic actually despite that last depressed blog post. It felt like my back had made a step in the right direction and I was thinking that maybe after all I’ll be healed and have 10 weeks or so to train. I saw Colin (our trainer) today and he broke the news. He told me the results came back positive for a ‘spondy’. I didn’t really know what a spondy was so he took me to this chart of the spine.

Basically I have a stress fracture in the L5 level of my spine and it’s not going to heal for 4-6 months. I can cross-train and do other non-pounding activities but running isn’t really going to happen. He told me I have some decisions to make and then asked me if I was a senior, pretty much saying “hey if this is your last year you can train on it, it’s going to hurt and not go away and you’re gonna have to back off when it’s bad, but you might be able to get something in for your final season.” I told him that I was a junior and I don’t want to bother with a mediocre outdoor season if it would prolong the injury cut into my XC training at all. He understood but said I didn’t need to make any decisions yet and we’ll know how bad it is/the course of action to take when I go back to the doctor in 2 weeks.

At this point, I just want to be able to have a full, 100% healthy senior year. Junior year was supposed to be the breakout season but that’s clearly out the window. Outdoor track is gone and there’s no saving it. I’m not going to get better in the next month and I wouldn’t have enough time to train anyway to have a good season so that’s done. I just want to go into summer injury free and leave this whole train wreck behind.

Depressed

I haven’t talked about my favorite aspect of life in a while because it’s been extremely depressing. Two months and four days after an innocent Thanksgiving weekend basketball game and I’m sitting here with the same injury in the same magnitude. I’m going to see the doctor tomorrow about my back and the likely result is this, “Well it might be this, I’ll send you to a specialist on that and we’ll see what he says”. That means that I’m going to have to wait at least another week until I find out what the problem is. Once I find out what’s going on, it will likely be a few more weeks before I can even think about running. At that point it will be late February or early March and I can kiss my junior year of track goodbye. Sure I might be able to muster up a 15:50 or something given 6 weeks of training or so of serious training but I don’t see myself getting even close to PR shape. Don’t get me wrong, if I can come back and run I’m going to work my ass off to make the most of the season but no matter how hard I work I’ll be limited by the time I have to train.

This depressing feeling is only compounded because I’m watching other people run, workout, race, and succeed while I sit here and complain about being hurt. I time most of the workouts now and while I really enjoy being around runners and watching people workout, it just makes me want to run. I still read the forums and watch all of these running videos and they just make me run to run. Since I got injured I always thought that this might happen but now that it’s actually going to, it’s just depressing. It hasn’t fully set in yet and I still have a tiny glimmer of hope (if the doc works some miracle) but at this point I’m kind of just trying to accept the fact that I won’t have a junior year track season instead of be in denial about it.

I’ll be motivated when I come back to make up for lost time but I don’t know exactly what to do in terms of actual goals. I had goals for this outdoor season and in all honesty, I think I was on my way to reaching them if not coming close. If that happened then I could go into senior year with new goals but now that I won’t have this 3rd year, do I just go into next year with the same goals as this year or make new ones? I wouldn’t have been THAT disappointed if I didn’t break 15:00 this year as long as I came close. Should I be disappointed if I don’t break 15:00 next year now? The idea of not breaking 15:00 my senior year sounds terrible but is that what I’m dealing with right now? I try not to think about it that much because that doesn’t really do any good but sometimes I can’t help it. I suppose I’ll just have to make the best of the present situation whatever result that may yeild.

 

Self Evaluation

I took a management quiz today for my one class. It evaluates you on several different categories and gives you the results showing your strengths and weaknesses. I don’t know why, (well actually I think I do) but every time I do one of these type deals I see some similar things. The main thing being that, pretty much, I think very highly of myself. This particular quiz said my self-confidence was very high and that I think I’m capable of doing a lot of things. This comes from a mastery of a number of different things (this is the website talking, not me).

The whole mastery of a different things I think could be the problem. I’ve ‘mastered’ a pretty good number of things, the problem is that none of those things are useful at all. Does it matter that I beat Solitaire in 42 seconds or was 9th in the nation in Icy Tower or broke 1,000,000 in Bejeweled or am really good at ping pong? No, none of this is useful at all. I will never put any of those things on a resume and hand it in thinking that will be what separates me from the others. I do however think one thing from all of this. Getting really good at stupid shit doesn’t show that I’m self-confident (although I am), it just shows that when I want to do something, I take it to the extreme and try to get really really good at it. This is common among distance runners who care about running. We take everything to the extreme, if you’re not going to go balls to the wall, you might as well not try at all. My adviser/coach said that my strengths were “Given the right motivation you work very hard to accomplish your goals. I see that not just on a per workout basis, but also over the course of the year of training.” So if I take an interest in something I can willingly dedicate a lot of time to it and be pretty successful, it’s just a matter of taking trying to find an interest. I don’t know why certain things interest me

Now the self-confidence, I’ll start by saying that yes, I do think pretty highly of myself. I generally think that I’m a lot smarter than the ‘average Joe’. The main reason is that over the years I’ve just come to realize that so many people out there are just plain stupid. I can think of a ton of examples of this from a number of different places. When I see these stupid people I just instantly think to myself, “I have to be smarter than that guy, and if that guy can make a decent living, there’s no reason I shouldn’t be more successful than him.”

In all honesty, I think both the addictive personality and the self-confidence are just common male Stortz genes. For whatever reason we think we’re really good at things or really smart and sometimes we are. Most of the time I’ll be the first to admit that someone is smarter than me about a certain topic or better than me at a certain game, but there are definitely sometimes when my ego gets in the way. I’ll probably look at college Sam 30 years from now and say how arrogant and naive he was, but for now, I’m content to say that Sam 30 years from now probably isn’t as smart as I am.