I’ll be Traveling to See the Solar Eclipse. You Should Too.

On Monday, August 21, 2017, around 1:15 PM ET, the moon will pass between the sun and the earth. Depending on where you are, the darkness will last from a few seconds to about two minutes.

It is my goal to be somewhere where the darkness lasts for two minutes.

I’m undecided on:

  • Who will be joining me. Open invite! Gourlay is not joining.
  • Which city to watch from. The major cities nearby are Atlanta (kinda), Nashville, St. Louis, Omaha, and Salem, with plenty of smaller cities along the path of total eclipse.
  • How we’re going to get to our destination. Either flight or ROAD TRIP!

Why you should go

Here’s a quote from this FiveThirtyEight article by a guy who’s seen over 30 total eclipses:

There is something primal about being outside when, over a period of less than an hour, it gets dark, the light gets very eerie, the colors change. You know that something strange is going on. Then, abruptly, it gets 10,000 times darker in the last minute. You look in the sky, and there’s this strange stuff going on. There’s a diamond ring surrounding this dark hole in the sky. Everybody who sees it is overwhelmed.

Another quote from a different guy, same article:

It is just overwhelmingly majestic. You can see photographs, you can see videos, and they help give you a little bit of an inkling of what it’s like. But when they see totality, so many people go, ‘Oh my god, I didn’t realize it was gonna be like this.’

You should go to see the eclipse. I’m going to see the eclipse.

Coming Up Short 3200m Later

The conditions were nearly perfect. I hit the mile in 4:52, slower than I hoped, but I still felt good and thought I’d negative split.

Laps 5-6-7 all felt like I was surging but each lap split kept being in the 74 range. I closed well with a ~69 or so but ultimately fell short of my goal running a 9:44.  Congrats to Simoncini for winning the guessing game!

I’m disappointed. In college and high school, you’re racing every week so when you have a bad race, you can rebound quickly.

Now, if I have a bad race it lingers and makes me question if I’m still in good shape or if I’m past my peak already for this cycle.

I’m going to chalk this up as a slightly below average performance and rationalize that I’m still in ~4:27 / 9:35 / 15:25 shape.

There’s a competitive mile race next Thursday where I’m hoping to be towed to a sub 4:30.

Guess My 3200m Time and Win!!!

I’m racing a 3200m tonight and whoever guesses closest to my time wins $10 and a note from me.

Some More Info

I ran a 4:30.9 mile which was worth a few seconds faster than that.

My plan is to go out in 4:47 – 4:48 and hopefully have something left to close with.

I’d put the over / under at 9:35, with the fastest being a little under 9:30 and slowest being a blowup of 9:50+.

***Update – I’ll have a rabbit running 72s (give or take) until 2400m***

Some Recent Workouts

For those who want to make an educated guess based off the data from the last 2 weeks.

4 x 1200 w/ 3:00 rest

3:43, 3:41, 3:42, 3:41 – Hot as shit but I was pretty happy with this.

6 x 400 w/ 1:00 rest then 4 x 200 w/ :45 rest

69.1, 68.1, 68.5, 68.1, 68.0, 69.1, 33.3, 33.2, 33.3, 33.0 – These workouts kill me, was basically all out.

3 x 1600 w/ 2:00 rest

5:19, 5:19, 5:19 – An easy race-week workout, was trying to run tempo effort. For reference, I did the same thing the week of my 15:51 @ Swat and ran 5:32, 5:29, 5:29, so I think that this perhaps more than anything shows I’m in good shape.


Guess away and good luck!

The Best Parallel Parking Job You’ve Ever Seen

Rob and I were looking for a spot to park, and I drove past a spot that was probably too small, but I wanted to try.

I had a good entry but thought it was too small. Rob said he thought I could make it, so I spent the next 5 minutes pulling into the spot.

Before getting out I said “If I’m not touching either car, I’ll leave it, but if I’m touching one I think I have to move it“.

Then we inspected it:

Somehow I was fully in the spot but touching BOTH cars. I don’t even know how that’s possible (I hit both cars (gently) multiple times). I wanted to leave it because it’d be hilarious for others to see it, but decided I couldn’t leave it there. Obviously I had to document it first though.

I don’t see how I’ll ever have a parallel parking job as good as this.

To the people who always hear headphones…

There’s a guy who wears headphones around the office 100% of the time.

Why?

  • Do they REALLY love music that much?
  • Or maybe it’s a podcast / audio book?
  • Maybe audio porn? Do they have audio porn?
  • I just Googled it, they do have audio porn.
  • Are they constantly using cell phone data?
  • Doesn’t it drain your phone battery way quicker too?
  • Maybe there’s nothing actually playing and they just really don’t want to talk to anyone?
  • What kind of world would it be if EVERYONE wore headphones all the time?
  • Are we going to get to a point where you show up to a meeting or even a bar and everyone has headphones in?

What you’re basically saying to everyone when you wear headphones all the time.

I’m not a headphones person and don’t plan on becoming one. I’d rather awkwardly avoid people than use headphones as an excuse. Who knows, maybe I’ll even meet someone new!

Ranking the Non-Major Sports

7. NASCAR

I assume they’re listening to country when they drive.

I just don’t get it. I could see the EVENT being awesome, just getting hammered all day outside in the sun with 100,000 other people.

But the sport itself never made sense to me. Why are the races so long? It’s not like track where you ‘train’ for sprints vs. distance right? Are the first 200 laps NOT boring to someone gets it?

I don’t begrudge those who enjoy it, I just don’t get it at all.

6. Boxing

Unfortunately the most marketed thing in the sport right now.

I follow loosely, know the big names, and have a decent understanding of the sport, but wouldn’t go out of my way to watch a fight (though I’ll probably watch McGregor / Mayweather like all the other sheep).

Boxing has been outdone in a marketing sense by the UFC, and frankly, who knows how much longer it has in the main stream light.

5. T&F

Being at a track meet is awesome (if you’re competing), but even I understand that it’s not the greatest sport to watch on TV. In fact, if you aren’t competing / don’t follow the sport, track & field is definitely the worst on this list.

When Usain Bolt retires, which is coming soon, track and field will have close to zero mass appeal beyond the hardcore track fans. I’m not worried, because I don’t think the sport needs to be popular among normal people for it to survive, but it is a bit discouraging.

4. MMA / UFC

Dana White, head of the UFC. Who’s the head of boxing?

A sport that’s been on the rise for years. Similar to boxing, I follow loosely, know the big names, and have a decent understanding. However, it’s just more entertaining and has done a better job of marketing itself.

My only (small) issue with MMA is the sort of barbaric nature. If I was a parent, this would be one of the last sports I’d want my kid to get into.

3. Soccer

Stars

The stars are marketable and the rivalries between the teams are intense and very real. It’s the most watched sport in the world for a reason, and its popularity in America has been growing.

There will be a LOT of buzz for the 2018 World Cup in the US.

Also, if you bet the over every time, it makes every game exciting no matter what.

2. Tennis

Marry me

I’ve written about my love for Federer before, and he truly exemplifies a STAR. Him winning Wimbledon two weeks ago was the best thing that could’ve happened to Tennis. Some will say having the “big four” win almost every Major is bad, and to some extent I agree, but STARS drive ratings.

I might even give tennis a try just because of him.

1. Golf

Posting up on a Sunday afternoon watching the final round is a great way to spend a Sunday. Again, a sport that needs stars, but fortunately, it has them. Golf was most recently at its peak when Tiger was dominating.

No one is at Tiger’s level yet, but with Spieth winning his third major, Rory looking good, Dustin Johnson being a wild card stud with a smokin’ hot wife, etc. etc. there are plenty of worthy stars that make golf worth watching.

Additionally, every round of the tournament matters. A stroke on Thursday is worth the same as a stroke on Sunday. All four days of a major are worth watching which is rare for any sport.


For what it’s worth, I’d rank golf, tennis, and soccer as #3, #4, and #5 on the overall sports rankings list.

My First Pedicure

Laura took me for my first pedicure on Saturday.

I expected a relaxing 30 minute spa treatment for my feet. Apparently that’s not quite what a pedicure is though.

The face she made when she saw my feet.

Two thirds of a pedicure is tense. Nothing was “painful” but you’re sitting there watching this girl go HAM on your feet / toes. Toes are sensitive. Feet are ticklish. It’s a dangerous combo, though the massage part was obviously enjoyable.

I didn’t get my nails painted (but I considered it!) and that would be the obvious visible takeaway from a pedicure.

For $40 it’s not something I would do again but I can cross that off the bucket list. Thanks sis!

My Top 10 Linkin Park Songs

As most of you probably know, Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park, committed suicide this morning. Linkin Park was my all-time #1 band for about 8 straight years. In his honor, I’m going to rank my top 10 Linkin Park songs.

10. Lying From You (Meteora)

An underrated song of theirs from Meteora. Too hard-rock-ish to get any mainstream love.

9. Shadow of the Day (Minutes to Midnight)

Probably a surprise to make my top 10 but I’m actually a fan of this one.

8. In the End (Hybrid Theory)

The first real hit. I’ve heard it so many times that I actually prefer The Untitled instead, but a must-have.

7. Breaking the Habit (Meteora)

This won best music video at some stupid awards show in like 2004. I remember being on the computer voting for it over and over again.

6. A Place for my Head (Hybrid Theory)

I always think of Ben and Alex at the “You, try to take the best of me.” part. A rager.

5. Pushing Me Away (Hybrid Theory)

Last song on the first album. On the softer side for them and I like this live version.

4. Waiting for the End (A Thousand Suns)

This was stuck in my head the first time I broke 16:00 in the 5k. It was at Frank Colden, I ran 15:55.33 and Jatin ran 15:55.30. The only real song of their “later” stuff that I like a lot.

3. Don’t Stay (Meteora)

A totally underrated song of their’s to lead off the second album and they rock the fuck out of it.

2. One Step Closer (Hybrid Theory)

An absolute fucking RAGER! The original GO HAM song for me.

1. Papercut (Hybrid Theory)

The first song of the first album. Set the tone for their entire career. A masterpiece.

 

Honorable Mention: Bleed it Out, Numb, Crawling, High Voltage, Faint

My Ranking of the Four Major Sports

4. NHL

Hockey is NOT the worst of these four sports. Brookes will cringe at this, but baseball is the worst in my opinion. Hockey is like a combo of soccer and basketball. You have the every-goal-counts asset combined with the up-tempo pace of basketball which is great.

The simple reason that hockey is #4 is exposure. Kids play soccer, basketball, baseball, etc. all the time, but very few play hockey. Its unfamiliarity in the States is why it will always be sort of a niche sport. I never played hockey and therefore don’t identify with the sport and don’t know all of the rules, but I don’t doubt that if I played, I’d be a die hard Flyers fan.

3. MLB

Laura and I went the Phillies game a few Sunday’s ago and it was great. Going down to the ball park for a beer and hot dog is a pretty good way to spend a Sunday afternoon in July.

However, here are four problems with baseball:

  • It’s too slow. It’s why it has the oldest average fan of all the four major sports.
  • It lacks star power. If the Phillies added Bryce Harper before the season started, they’d still have 0% chance at the playoffs. Lebron turns whatever team he’s on into a playoff team. Some may say this is a good thing, but stars drive ratings.
  • There are too many games. Whoop-dee-do, we went 20-0 to start the season. Only 140 more games to go!
  • The unwritten rules are STUPID. You can’t bat flip, you can’t jog too slow when you hit a home run, you have to hit a guy with a 95mph fast ball for something he did 5 years ago. The baseball snobs will say “That’s just how the game is played” and that casual fans don’t get it. Newsflash, dumb shit like this is driving people away from your sport.

The sport is fading in popularity. I don’t know how to save it, but as the target market, I can’t think of much that would make me want to watch.

2. NFL

The NFL literally owns a day of the week for half the year. I see two things that set the NFL apart:

  • Every. Game. Matters. It cannot be understated how important this is. EVERY Sunday matters in Philadelphia. Even when your team is  3-7, there’s a chance you go on a run and sneak into the playoffs.
  • Fantasy Sports. Obviously fantasy isn’t exclusive to football, but it’s way more manageable than the other sports. Casual fans can play since there’s only one set of games a week. NBA / MLB fantasy get overwhelming for the casual fan.

From September – February I, along with millions of others, am basically keeping up to date with every single thing that’s going on in the NFL.

My only real issue with the NFL / football is A) I don’t understand the Xs and Os well enough and B) the concussions / health stuff is a real issue and could have a big impact in the coming decades.

1. NBA

The NBA is #1 for me because I played basketball growing up. I can understand everything much better than football. I’m not an NBA analyst by any means, but I can actually see the game in a way that I can’t with the other sports.

Other reasons include:

The NBA has STARS; These people are larger than life in their cities in a way that football players aren’t. Free agency makes it easier for stars to move around. It has swag, meaning kids idolize these players differently than other athletes. The games are high energy, and the athleticism you see on a night-to-night basis is unreal.

I cannot understate how excited I am for this upcoming Sixers season. Even when the Sixers sucked I still followed the NBA very closely, but basketball is finally back in Philadelphia and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

Game of Thrones – My Thoughts So Far

  • The chick who shows her boobs a lot can talk to dragons. They’re either her best friends or her lovers, I still haven’t figured that out yet.
  • King Joff

    Everyone knew King Joffrey was going to die but it happened way later than expected. Personally I had no idea it was coming.

  • No one knows if John Snow is dead or alive. He also could be gay. Who knows. It’s all going to be revealed this season. Maybe he’s the one who killed Joffrey?
  • The little person was stuck in jail for a while. I think it’s the same actor who plays Mickey in Seinfeld. Patrick Dinkleman or something is his real name?
  • They cast the real life strongest man in Sweden to play the little man’s father. I don’t get why he’s capable of talking to animals though, that part never made sense to me.
  • Cheater!

    The one woman cheated on someone and had to walk through the town naked while people egged her. I thought they were going to kill her, but I’m pretty sure I saw her on the ad for this new season, so she may still be okay.

  • It was fall for a while and everyone was enjoying themselves, but now winter is coming, and it’s time to go inside.

If you can’t tell, I’m PUMPED for season 4 to start.