Thursday, September 3, 2015

Running

Hello again.

I've tried to shy away from writing too much.  Though I have a lot of thoughts, and some of them I'd like to share, I know that we're all flooded with blog posts, and commercials, and all of that kind of stuff.  Thus, I will only periodically write on here.  Maybe once or twice a month?

Today I want to tell you about the event I have decided to participate in next weekend.  It is the Rotary Run for Life.  It is a 1/2 marathon that will take place in my hometown of Stony Plain.

Here is the info on the event.



Basically, the day is to help raise awareness and funds for suicide prevention and awareness.  This is the first year I've participated, so it could be more than that.

This summer, 4 different instances of suicide has affected people and families I am directly connected to.  I don't have the words to say to these people.  I don't think anyone does.

My conclusion is that the best thing we can do is stand together with these friends and family.  Or sit together with them.  Or sit and listen to them.  Or hold them.  Or, in this case, run with them.

As far as my running goals, I have been working on them since January.  My original goal was to run 300 miles this year.  I upped the goal to 365 a few months into it.  As of now, I am at 213.7 miles.  I'm somewhere in between my two goals, and that's something I am happy about.

The best thing about running has been the healthy feelings.  I've lost weight, so it's nice to feel healthier that way.  I've had less headaches than I used to.  I've enjoyed the time on the road to think and process things as my muscles flex and bend on themselves for an hour or so.  It's a very nice thing.  It's hard work, but work worth doing.

So, my final comment is that I hope to raise a modest amount of money for the cause.  $500.  I think that's a doable number.  Even though we all have obligations and bills to pay, I think that there could possibly be room for many of you to toss $10 or $20 bucks this way for the cause.

If that's something you think you'd like to do, please click here.  I am running in support of the Simon Poultney Foundation but to donate just leave it as "pledge an athlete" and it will go under my totals.

Anyways, thanks for reading and wish me luck for next weekend!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

My Brother Had a Daughter

Dear friends, there is a good feeling in here for you somewhere.

When my purchase of Sufjan Stevens' new record arrived in the mail I was delighted to find a download code to go along with it.  I know record purists consider included Mp3s to be in poor taste, but I am not one to want to purchase the same music twice.  I punched in the code and soon enough I would have my very own legally burned copy of Carrie and Lowell to listen to in the Matrix whenever I pleased.

Now, first of all, that album is a heart breaker.  When I had heard the first track a few weeks earlier online, I teared up in the office.  It hit me slowly.  Like a crush more than a hit.  This is an album I would recommend to you if I were writing about it, and I am, so I am.

In my car, I was introduced to the second song.  It's called I should have known better, and I honestly, should have.

The heartache struck again.  I heard a line that made me think of my beautiful niece Katie:

My brother had a daughter 
The beauty that she brings, illumination.

I often think about lyrics that transcend specific meaning and intent.  Though I am not quite sure what this song is all about, with this seemingly obscure line, Sufjan seemed to have been thinking of me.  Maybe it's the mystery of the lyrics that surround it.

I think of her every time I hear it.

And here's where things really light up.

After this realization, and as I was really starting to enjoy the whole album, particularly my line, my other brother had a baby.  A beautiful 4 pounds and 6 ounces of a baby girl!

So, a few weeks after meeting her, I was listening to the song again and the line hit me in a whole new way.  More life breathed into an already vibrant meaning and feeling!

I pulled the car over.

What is this joy that I should have 2 beautiful nieces to think about from this song?  Who am I?  This line, tucked away in the 2nd song of Carrie and Lowell.

It's for me.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Nepal

Kathmandu you know what I feel for you. The scar you've left on my heart.

Give me your wishes and ill swaddle them deep and warm inside my insecurities.

Breath through the craters that plague your ruined mind; scrape against your lungs.

I broke down somewhere between Tamil and Jawalakhel's traffic circle.  The blind cafe gave me relief.

I turned aside tiger balm, couldn't get rid of slick shoes slinging songs.  The mountains climbed higher as the days wore on.

That hill.  Teaching English.  Carrying a television on the back of a motorbike, past a corner and into the sunrise of Fish Tail.  I couldn't believe the things you were showing me, the people you held inside.

Kathmandu you remember me.  I was only there for a short time.  You gave me a name, Barroon it was.  You startled me in the night as I walked up the path to our home.

You welcomed me with a bowl of lentils and a folded hat.  You showed me who you are, the kind of endless in your will makes me feel small.

Makes me feel.