A modest four miler with skunks everywhere

Yesterday I took the day off, because I’ve been struggling with bad air, a rough hamstring, and…motivation, I guess.

It’s that time of year, where a six o clock run is a pitch black run, so I’m running with a Black Diamond headlamp to keep me from tripping on the elevated points in the Provo River Trail. I guess now’s as good a time as any to mention that the Black Diamond light works great. It doesn’t exactly shine a heavy beam on the trail, but it lights up enough so that I know if I’m going to trip on anything, plus plenty of the trail in front of me.

I couldn’t help but notice the smell of a skunk as I ran along the river. There was a time that this would divert my path, but I don’t think it really matters. Ever since I was a kid I (this is a shame) sort of didn’t mind the smell of them. I’m not sure that’s the case anymore, but it doesn’t exactly strike me as appealing, either.

I tried to keep my stride length short, so that my hamstring could take a break. This meant a significantly slower pace, but if that’s the compromise for still being able to run, I’ll take it.

On the way to the train, this morning, I’ll be danged if I didn’t smell a skunk out on Geneva road.

Lucy freaks out

Yesterday, I was minding my own business in the Family Room (watching TV), when all of a sudden, I heard a scream.  This was the type of scream that is typically reserved for nuclear war, tax increases, and at those who cruise at 10 mph below the speed limit.  But through the miracle of…genes, I recognized these vocal emissions as those from a daughter (I didn’t know which one, just that I was somehow, unfortunately related to this scream.)

In high school, I couldn’t run faster than a 15 minutes per mile pace, or than 50 yards (our front door, to the school bus).  But yesterday the shame was that there was no witness to see me fly down the backyard stairs and out into the lawn, where Lucy stood, petrified, tears- still screaming.

“Lucy!”, I yelled, trying my best to overcome her voice, “What is wrong!!!?”

“A bug!”, she exclaimed.  She raised her arm to show me, just as the mysterious insect flew away.  I examined her arm, to see where she had been attacked.  For such a small bug, whatever pain it had inflicted upon her, I knew that I had only minutes to perform first aid, before whatever poison this thing possessed, took over her five year old body.

But there was nothing.  At all.  She calmed down and I could see that she was perfectly unharmed.  Just scared.

On the other hand, I sustained an arm, leg and foot injury as I had barely objected to gravity, pretty much falling down the stairs, with a manner that one would barely called “controlled.”

Nothing is true and everything is possible, by Peter Pomerantsev

It took me a while to finish this book, but last night, I did. I admit the author was a little over my head, but the glimpses that I did get into Russia’s corrupt political system were fascinating. I can’t imagine living in a place where the police are bought and paid for, where poverty is everywhere and crime is so prevalent.

It’s not that the US doesn’t have these same issues, but the book makes it clear to me that it is exponential so in Russia. Bribes, for instance, are commonplace.

The book talks about how Putin has pretty much turned the country into a reality show, where news networks show only what is approved by the Kremlin.

I loved the ending of the book, because everything was tied together nicely and it became evident that Putin was to blame for much of the corruptness in Russia.