Spoiler warning

There is something comforting about partaking in a work of fiction that has been spoiled.
I’ve purchased many trade paperbacks (i.e. big comic collections) in my time. A lot of the time I will flip through them before I really read them. I usually regret this as it spoils the story. At least I assume it does. With comics it is also fairly easy to find out what has been going on in them by reading the internet. It takes several months of the comic coming out regularly before there is enough that can be compiled together for a book.
But this weekend I purchased a book I don’t know the conclusion of. I’ve been fairly good at not peeking ahead. But it is by an author not known for being nice to his characters.
And I dread reading it.
I know it will be a good story, but the fact that I know bad things will happen, is making me uncomfortable reading it. It doesn’t help that in the first couple of pages, the hero lists the bad things that happen because he didn’t get out of the game.
The equivalent is Joss Whedon, and his predilection for killing your favourite characters.
Compare and contrast with Star Trek. There you know there will always be a happy ending and nothing will change. That is very comforting. It may not be the best, but you don’t always want tragedy in your life.

Blackfoot report

Last week I did my first race of the year, the Blackfoot 100km. I finished in 13:13:43.
It was not easy.
I had taken three weeks off from running to let my knee get better. Well, not actually my knee, but my IT-band. You feel it in the same area. But it felt like that time off didn’t do a lick of good. After about 10km, my knee felt just like it did before. The vacation hadn’t helped.
But it wasn’t pain. It just felt like something pressing on the side of my knee. And being stupid, I decided to ignore it and keep going. After the first loop of 25km, I put on a knee brace, and that seemed to help. It still felt off, but not as badly. I was able to push on and finished the whole thing. Unfortunately, I didn’t put the thing on too tightly, so the spiky part of the velcro rubbed against the back of my knee for 75km. Skin does not appreciate that.
I did make a mistake on the first two loops. I was running alone, and somehow decided to count the number of uphills. I believe the result came out to 116 uphills on the loop. And the people on the Wapiti aid station seemed happy to know they were hill 69. But the problem was that I focussed to much on the hills. It made the run harder.
Thankfully, on the last two loops I had caught up with a friend. The conversation helped distract me from the agony of the run.
Afterwards, my knee felt fairly good. Well, compared to the rest of my body. But since the rest of me was in a lot of pain, that really isn’t saying much.
On Thursday I did a very slow 2km run. It was painful. But not in the knee. It took several days for my quads to calm down after that. It only got better today.
But when I went for a run today, my knee flared up again. It was as soon as I hit my first uphill. Which explains how I got past it in the race; I walked every uphill on the course. I decided to turn around and go home before I did too much damage.
The problem is that I need to run. It is my best way of being with what I can laughably call my “social support network”. I’ve been dealing with a lot of stuff lately, and I’m not feeling great about life. It helps to talk about it with friends who are forced to stick with you for several hours. I’ve been more open with them than with many other people, probably because my brain gets turned to mashed potato after awhile and my self-filter gets shut off.
Now my next race is the Sinister Seven, which is in a month. I’ve got a lot of doctor appointments this week. Hopefully I’ll be able to get this IT-band straightened out quickly.

Wedding presence

I’ve fallen a bit behind in my blogging. My excuse is that I’ve been really busy. This will be my first weekend in the last four where I get to be home with both time and energy. Which means I’ll be cleaning up my condo for most of it.

Last Friday, I was at a friend’s wedding. It was a nice time, and I’m sorry I had to leave early for a prior engagement. I probably would have done more dancing if my knee had been feeling better and wasn’t needed for the aforementioned prior engagement. The food was excellent and I ate quite a bit of it.
I’m lucky I’m a guy. For men, the bar for wedding gifts is really low. If there is a registry, you just get something on it and call it a day. But for this wedding, there was none. I went shopping half-an hour before the ceremony. That’s probably not good, but the first place I went to, I immediately saw the perfect gift. The place didn’t do gift-wrapping, but I was in and out in less than two minutes. All the staff I talked to were friendly and courteous.
I’m probably going to do all my gift shopping at CIBC now.