Friday, May 30, 2008

Another marathon blog

Deal with it. Besides, this one in cool. My official-taken-by-the-track-photographers photos came in. I can only afford one so help me decide. Which one conveys the grit and perserverance it takes to finish one of these things? Which one shows the satisfaction of completing a task that's near impossible? Which one makes me look skinny and pretty?

On Wednesday night I went to dragonboat practice and was telling one of the girls about Sunday. She was suitably impressed and told me that she "could barely complete a Star Wars marathon let alone a walking one". I laughed extremely hard because I'm a geek.


Thursday, May 29, 2008


Now I know what you whiteys go through. I got myself a long lasting souvenir from my marathon on Sunday. It's funny what over 7 hours in the beating sun will do to your skin, Black or not. Even my natural spf 15 pretty much ran out after about kilometre 5. Oh well. To be honest I kinda like it. Is that weird of me? After never having a sunburn in my 40 years of life and watching friends, family and even my very own children go through it I can finally sympathise. Even though it's really not too bad. Only in one place and it only feels.... well, I can feel it touching things. How long will it last? Will I be prone to burns in that spot again? Aaaah, yes. The ache makes me feel alive.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Yuck. Foot wine.

You can see I'm feeling back to normal when my mind starts to wander into bizarre territory.

I was watching a commercial for the intolerably perky and entirely unwatchable local morning show when I saw two of the hosts making wine. By squashing the grapes with their feet. I don't drink wine but the idea of someone's toe jam and bunions anywhere near anything I drink gives me the heebie-jeebies. Yes, I realize that they most likely wash their trotters before dunking them in the vat a la Lucy but feet can go through a lot as I can attest after Sunday.

If I drank wine, this would be disturbing to me. I know there are probably more modern ways of pressing grapes and that a foot-squished batch is probably hard to come by. But still. Uck. And I can see them advertising the hell out of it too. "Pressed the old-fashioned way!"... "Old World goodness!"... "A taste of trappist monks".... Each bottle would probably cost a fortune, too to keep those guys in Odour Eaters. I'd need an iron-clad guarantee that the feet go through a government mandated pedicure on threat of prison and there's a special foot autoclave (footoclave?) at every winery, I may be tempted to take a sip. Maybe.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I wasn’t last!!

Okay, I'm not sure how long this marathon stuff will last so you'll just have to put up with it for now. Let me chew on this one for a while. At least until the pain in my legs goes away.

So I messed around on the National Capital Marathon website and found out a few things:

1) I wasn't last! This one was big for me. Because after actually finishing this thing, my second goal was not to come in last. As you can see in a few Facebook photos, Heather and I are completely and utterly alone. We looked ahead and saw no one as well as behind. Just crickets. Turns out there were sixteen people behind us. The next people were 2 minutes behind us and the very last person came in about an hour after we did. Whew.

2) I came in 3224th place. Keep in mind there were 17 people behind me

3) I also came in 1165 out of 1215 in my category which is women aged 40-44

4) My pace was 10minutes 33seconds per kilometre

5) It took me 1hr 39min 25seconds to walk 10k; 3:33:07 to walk 20K and 5:08:16 to do 30K and of course, 7:21:55 to finish the full 42.2K

I want to thank Meredith from Ogdensburg who kept me company for the first 18K. She dropped back because she was feeling sore and dropped out somewhere after 30K. I'm so sorry she got so far but didn't finish. I wish I could contact her to tell her that.

I also want to thank Heather from Yonkers who walked with me from about 30K until the end. After we passed the finish line I lost her and never got the chance to thank her for spurring me on at the end. She's in a couple of my Facebook photos.

The volunteers at the event were awesome. Long (loooong) after the elite runners were finished, they stayed out to encourage and cheer us on. Granted, there weren't that many but there were a few.

I got my first sunburn! This is really something for me. I can't stop rubbing my shoulders. The skin on there feels like it's been slapped. A bit sore but nothing too bad. I've definitely got some (more?) colour.

So there'll be at least one more of these posts when the official photos come out but don't worry, it won't be too bad. Now I'm off to work. I hope they'll be indulgent with my limping and non-stop blabbing. Not to mention wearing my medal all day...


Monday, May 26, 2008


Longer than my workday, longer than I sleep and longer than I've ever walked before. I walked for almost 7 and a half hours yesterday.

Where do I start? You better settle in because it'll take a while. I got to the startline at about 6:40. This is about 5 minutes after dropping my pedometer on the sidewalk and turning my ankle trying to pick it up. It looked bad enough for the guys walking behind me to stop and help me up asking if I was okay. Oh my god, how embarrassing. It didn't stop me from walking but it's definitely still sore.

When the gun went off, I was full of emotion. I tried to take it all in and I even got a tear in my eye from the music, cheers and fanfare at the start. I started walking at a pretty good pace that I thought I could keep up for the whole race.

5K: Because the weather warmed up, I dropped the hoodie I was wearing on the road. Apparently charities come by and pick up the clothes left behind by the marathoners.

10K: I hooked up with a runner named Meredith. She's from New York and is an EMT. She's super nice and we toasted our virgin marathoner status with paper cups of Gatorade.

18K: Meredith and I break up. She's feeling sore and tells me to go on without her. I feel bad but I go. I never see her again. I honestly feel like I could walk until tomorrow.

20K: Uh oh, I feel a blister forming under the pad of my right foot. Also my hips feel, well, terrible. Who knew I had such a wiggle in my walk?

21K: You're kidding. Another blister? Same place but on my other foot. And my hips? I don't want to talk about them. But yay... I'm halfway through.

30K: Hello, Heather! Also from New York but she walks marathons all the time. She has one of those backpacks full of water and tricks. She says she 's walking the fastest she ever has. Ummm... anyone else notice that Heather and I are the only ones on the road? Either we're first by at least a kilometre or dead last. I'm so tired I'm actually starting to think it's the first one.

40K: Holy crap. I can't believe we're almost done. I feel like if I stop walking I'll never walk again. There is no one else around. The bands are all gone, the food in the recovery area is all gone, the spectators are all gone (except for my family... yay!) yet Heather and I are still walking.

42.2K: Done! There is still someone there to cut the chip off my shoe and put a medal around my neck. It's heavy. Now that I've stopped walking I never want to walk again. My hips and blisters are singing in three part harmony. I'm so proud that I finished but so disappointed that my body deserted me. I never expected to be sore in the places I was sore. My cardio was fine. I never once felt too tired to finish. But I did feel at around 35K that I'd never ever do this again. Ever.

When I got home my family was so so sweet. They fetched and carried for me. They filled a bucket with salty water to soak my feet. And made me lie on the couch. Good thing because I could barely move my lower half. Scott even cooked dinner of burgers and fries. This morning I couldn't get out of bed. My hips are betraying me, my blisters fell better but my right knee? Well, that's a new one. So I called in sick to work today and it took me this long to haul my carcass to the computer to write this.

So to recap, it was a beautiful walk. But waaaaaay too long. We did pass by lots of Ottawa landmarks that I'd previously driven by. I could probably walk 20K but not 42.2K. Never again. Interesting fact: did you know that marathoners take massive craps on the route? I was shocked that all 3 times I peed there were were huge dumps in the caibos. UGH.

Anyway, I'm proud of myself that I finished, I slept with my medal under my pillow and I'm wearing it right now. I'm eating whatever I want this week and I'm not going to the gym even once. I can't get out of dragonboat practice Wednesday but I can't go today. I can still barely move. I'm going back to my impression on the couch. See you in the morning.


(Pictures pending... Photobucket and I are having a tiff... but you can check them out on Facebook)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

To me. Okay, to us.

Fifteen years ago I married my friend.... blah blah blah... Yes, it's hokey but whatever, it's true. I think he's the shiz. He's my hero and such an awesome guy. And nice to boot. So there you go. My tribute to the coolest, funniest, best man I know.

Now onto new and more stomach twisting news. This stupid marathon. I picked up my race package. I LOVE my bib number 4567. It almost makes me feel lucky. Then I took a look at the route. In case you forgot, a marathon is 42.2K. I've been joking that I can barely drive that distance let alone walk it. I have a pendulum of feelings about this.

UP: I've been walking since I was 2 years old. That's 38 years of training. I can do this. How hard can it be?
DOWN: Look how far this is! Was I smoking crack when I came up with this idea? I never should have inhaled.
UP: There's a 5 hour pace bunny. If I can just keep up with him/her, I can do this.
DOWN: That's 5 hours of walking. No snacks or bathroom breaks. Just water on the fly, nasty gel and peeing in a porta potty. Good times. I must be certifiable.
UP: It'll be a beautiful day
DOWN: Is there even weather Sundays at 7am?

All I know it that on Sunday night it'll all be over. The good thing about this race is that it's not over until the last racer crosses the finish line. So no shame wagon this year. Next week I plan on milking this for all it's worth. I'm not going to the gym even once and I'm eating whatever the hell I want.

I'm taking my camera (Scott thinks it's a bad idea what with my fanny pack filled with electronics) so I'll be snapping photos along the route that I'll post. It should be good for a larf or two. We'll see. You'll hopefully see me on Monday. Have a restful weekend...


Thursday, May 22, 2008


He did it last night! I'm truly shocked. Totally unexpected. I hope he's the next Carrie Underwood and not the next Reuben Studdard. Enjoy some of my favourite Cookie moments:


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Why do I have to have struggled?

Yes, I'm a Black woman. No, I'm not African-Canadian/American... whatever, just Black. If pushed I'll tell you that my parents are from the West Indies but I'm not. Just straight up Canadian with a sprinkle of "flava".

So why should I have struggled? I was born in middle class Montreal. I went to suburban schools and had a pretty boring youth.

I can count the "racial" incidents that happened in the last 40 years on one hand:

1) I was about 7, riding my bike and a little kid shouted at me "Nigger black!". I didn't even understand what that meant.
2) In grade 11, Cheryl Guerra (a Black girl) called me an Oreo cookie because she said I was Black on the outside and white on the inside. So?
3) When I graduated college the dean asked me if I was planning to take my degree "back to my country".
4) When the kids were little (and very pale compared to me) I got asked quite often in different ways if I was their nanny.
5) A few months ago a delivery guy assumed I wasn't the lady of the house.

Seriously, that's about it. Nothing really hurtful or insulting. Just a nagging feeling that some people are idiots... racially motivated or not. Really, most of these incidents were from the mouth being engaged before the brain is in gear.

Being a Black woman, I haven't struggled. I don't have a concept of being discriminated against. I don't understand it. I watch movies about race issues and they affect me like science fiction. An interesting study on a fascinating subject but that's about it. I feel a bit guilty about that but there it is. Is it my fault that I had a discrimination-free youth? I suppose I'm lucky. And I hope my kids are just as fortunate.


Tuesday, May 20, 2008


My dishwasher gave up the ghost over the weekend. Not the motor or anything serious, thank god, just the door hinge. So my precious, time saving machine is now sadly silent in the middle of my kitchen, door all askew and pathetic.

And how fun was it to actually do dishes after dinner? Instead of spending 5 minutes doing the wine glasses and the stuff that doesn't fit into my precious machine, I spent 30 minutes doing everything. Every fork, every plate, every pot. I told Scott that there's no way I'm ever going to bake until it's fixed and he's lucky we're not eating off paper plates as it stands. The baking thing lasted about 12 hours. I have to bake. it's my raison d'etre. I made a gorgeous white cake with Italian buttercream frosting. The buttercream was a mess because it involved egg whites and cooked sugar. Tons of sticky dishes. I discovered the trick of having a sinkful of hot soapy water to just drop things in. But I don't want tricks. I want my baby back baby back baby back....

Hopefully we'll get a hinge soon and come out of the land of the Luddites and into the light of the technologically advanced. It's scary here and my hands are all pruney.


Monday, May 19, 2008

Holiday haiku

Rainy holiday
Perfect for watching tv
You ARE the father!!!!!!!!!!

Have a great day. Our plan is to play board (bored?) games, watch tv and videos and hang out in our jammies for the rest of the day. You?



Friday, May 16, 2008

May 2-4 Weekend! Or Victoria Day to you purists

Well, the first long weekend of the summer is here and before you all start planting, opening your cottage, setting off fireworks or barbequeing (Of which I'm doing none) I'd like to think about the reasons why it's called May 2-4 weekend.

Maybe it's because most often the Queen's birthday is celebrated on the 24th May. But I think we just go by the second-last-Monday-in-May thing so this year it's on the 19th. Or maybe it's to celebrate a large case of beer which we Canadians call a 2-4. Whatever, we get a holiday. And as I've taken today off work, I have a 4 day weekend to boot.

It's supposed to rain this weekend which'll spoil the abovementioned bbqs, cottaging, fireworks and garden planting (not so much the beer-drinking, though) but I had planned to spend it indoors anyway. Elliott wants to take his friends to the badly reviewed Speed Racer for his birthday party. No problem. I'll be in the arcade waiting for them and playing Dance Dance Revolution. Loot bags will be cool... a microwave popcorn pack, tiny pop can, jujubes all in one of those plastic popcorn boxes. Sweet. I rock when it comes to loot bags.

Anyway, have an awesome weekend. Enjoy the outdoors (or indoors) and have fun whatever you end up doing. Oh, and Ontarians, the cops are out en force so watch your speed. And for the love of god, don't drink and drive.


Thursday, May 15, 2008

Good afternoon

I would have done one of these this morning but I was so rushed I took the bus instead of biked to work.

Good thing too... I have some blog fodder to share. Hope your stomach can take it because mine almost couldn't.

I got on my bus and as usual, it was crowded. Yay. Oooh... there's a seat beside an old man. I squash my ample butt in and settle in with my magazine. After a few minutes I notice this man is raising his arm. A lot. Finally I decided to look at what he was doing. Why? Why? I can't unsee what I've seen.

He raised his arm and started digging at a sore on the back of his neck. It was red and raw and fluid was coming out of it that he kept dragging along his neck. Gag. Okay. I can do this. I try to read my magazine again but I keep reading the same sentence over again. Then I feel his arm go up. Oh god, don't look don't look don'tlookdon'tlookdon'tlook.... SHIT. He was doing it again but went to a different nasty looking mark behind his ear. Gaah! Now I notice he's got these sores all over his head and neck. I also notice his nails are filthy and have this suspicious brown stuff underneath them. Now, I think I'm going to pass out from choking down my own vomit. I frantically started looking for another seat. Thankfully one became free and I took it, nearly pushing the ear bud wearing hipster doofus out of my way in the process.

When I sat in my new place, I was more able to see the bullet I dodged. I watched in shock and awe this guy taking off his baseball cap, digging at sores on his head and replace his hat. I'm free yet I can't look away. It was truly one of the most nauseating experiences of my adult life.

You know what this makes me think? It makes me think fuck the environment. Sitting alone in my 7 passenger minivan and destroying planet earth is more desireable to me than saving the world and going through that again. Yuck.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Part of the party is over

So Elliott is 12 now and according to my tradition, there are baked goods for both the day and party which will be Saturday. I made chocolate cupcakes with chocolate mousse stuffing and chocolate ganache on top. Oh, and I made them double sized. They were gooood.

Aaah, yes. I always consider it to be a great birthday when I get to make an awesome confection. I imagine Elliott thought they were yummy too. But that's neither here nor there. Now I have to come up with something kick-ass for his party on Saturday. No problem. As my very youthful co-worker Anik always says "it's all good". And it is.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Although to be honest I think it's me that deserves the kudos. After all I was the one in 37.5 hours of labour. He only had to show up. Anyway, he's reading this over my shoulder as I write so I can't say too much except that he's 12, awesome, funny, smart, has loads of friends, a mustache and smells odd. Really odd. Love the kid, though. I really do think he's awesome. A really great guy. Here's a photo essay of my former baby boy...


Monday, May 12, 2008

Good Morning Lovelies

I'm just going to come right out and say that I have nothing this morning.

I'd rather not get into the fact that Scott got grouchy when he locked the bathroom door and I used a knitting needle to open the door to grab my watch. We're not door lockers here so I wondered what he was up to. It turned out it was nothing but sparked a debate about privacy that included purses, diaries, blogs, computer histories... I argued that I have nothing to hide but he said that doesn't matter, it's a privacy thing. I still say I have nothing to hide and don't lock the bloody bathroom door because I have a knitting needle and I know how to use it.

No, I don't want to talk about that so I got nothing.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

Surprise! It’s a Sunday blog!

I had a Mother's Day thing to mention that won't wait until tomorrow (obviously). So I'm taking the opportunity while the family is out (another part of my gifts) to quickly blog.

Next, Happy Mother's Day to all from my secret boyfriends Luke and Joe. This video always makes me giggle:


Friday, May 9, 2008

It’s Friday!

I don't usually get jazzed about the weekend but Scott's coming home tomorrow afternoon and I have dragonboat practice tomorrow morning. Not only that but it's Mother's Day on Sunday and I intend on enjoying Auntie Mame and my cd (either Queen or Kool & The Gang... I know they're odd bedmates but I want what I want).

So have a fabulous Friday and to all the mums out there... have a fantastic day. This forward made me laugh like a drain:


All answers given by 2nd grade school children to the following questions :

Why did God make mothers?
1. She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2. Mostly to clean the house.
3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?
1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3. God made my Mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of ?
1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?
1. We're related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's moms like me.

What kind of little girl was your mom?
1. My Mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer?
3. Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my Mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that Mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

Who's the boss at your house?
1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dad's such a goof ball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms & dads?
1. Moms work at work and work at home and dads just go to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller & stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.
4. Moms have magic, they make you feel better without medicine.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't do spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What would it take to make your mom perfect? I really like this one!
1. On the inside she's already perfect. O utside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd diet, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd GET rid of that.
2. I'd make my mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it and not me.
3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on the back of her head.


Thursday, May 8, 2008

Photo woes

I've often been told I'm photogenic. I thank people for that but secretly think "of course I'm photogenic... I pick pictures of myself that look great!".

The reason I bring this up is because of Facebook. In my profile I have some pretty nice photos of myself. Nice because I picked them myself. Unfortunately there's a section of photos labelled "added by others". This section has pictures not sanctioned by Karenworld or any of its affiliates so the photos are much more err... "earthy".

Luckily I'm not the kind of person that demands these less than flattering pics be removed. I'm one who believes that any exposure is good exposure. I guess. You be the judge:

See how this works? I'm not photogenic. I just make good choices. And seriously, I should not be showing that second photo around, should I? But it makes a good point. Be careful of those who you've only met online. Their photos could lie. Hopefully my true looks are somewhere in the middle but I don't know. I'm on the other side of this face. You tell me. But be sure to only use the Facebook photos I've endorsed. I thank you.


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

What the hell is Loving Day?

Have any of you heard of this before? Loving Day is on 12 June every year. It commemorates a ruling by the States allowing mixed marriages. In 1967. Nineteen sixty-seven, folks. That's the year I was born. Isn't that amazing? I'm so glad I'm Canadian. Of course I'm sure someone will open my eyes and say that Canada was just as bad or even worse but let me live in my bubble, will you? It just freaks me out that Scott and I could have gone to jail for 1 to 5 years just for being in love back then. Crazy. The day is named after Richard and Mildred Loving who went to court to fight for their life and their family. The fact that this happened in my lifetime is so humbling.

Well, Mildred died on Friday last week at 68. She and her husband were pioneers and paved the way for mixed couples in the States to just be. You can tell that they didn't bank on being heroes when they went into this but they were. And they did good.


Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Japanese man asses

I've come up for air long enough to post this. I swear I laughed till my abs hurt and I cried for about 5 minutes after. So silly! Thanks to Annette my very funny, beautiful, talented, charming friend (How was that, honey?).

I defy you to watch this without laughing. If you do, I don't want to know you. Have a great Tuesday...


Monday, May 5, 2008

Morning kiddies!

I'm feeling pretty happy this morning despite the fact that Elliott had an allergy attack (I medicated him and sent him to school anyway) and I can hear Audrey coughing from the other room (she'll get her puffer today). Thankfully Henry's still in bed. Not only that but Scott's in Paris right now. He called yesterday and had the gall (get it?) to tell me that most of his co-workers took their wives and that the weather was gorgeous. He's so lucky that I just got back from England. Sort of. Is it totally evil to have actually preferred the trip alone to see my friend than a trip for a week with my husband? Just the 2 of us? For a whole week? It is evil, isn't it? See, this is what happens after 20 years.

Besides I got to go to 2 dragonboat practices. One at a pool Saturday and one on the water Sunday. Finally! I was so thrilled. It was rainy, cold, windy and pretty much miserable but you couldn't see a sad face no matter how hard you looked. We were so pumped. So this is the start of about 4 practices a week for my 2 teams. I'll have a back like the Incredible Hulk by the time the festival gets here at the end of June. Hulk smash!


Friday, May 2, 2008

I’m such a child

Last week I bought a Webkinz. Let me be perfectly clear. I bought a Webkinz for myself. I waited as long as I could. I've previously bought one for each of the kids and Audrey herself has 4. Everytime the kids play on the Webkinz website I ask to play the games. I'm tired of not having any control. So what did I do? I spent the $9 and bought myself a black lab puppy. Name? Casper Jesperson. Yes, I named a cute toy doggie after Cancer Cowboy from JPod. He abuses cough syrup and is a sex addict. Sue me. Can I help it if Douglas Coupland has a knack for a catchy name?

Have a nice weekend. I'll be in Webkinz World earning money to buy a Cowboy a backyard and working toward my crown of wonder.


Thursday, May 1, 2008

Karenworld’s most smartest benevolentest leader. Yes, I read poetry

So I was reading a book of poetry quotes and came across part of one by John Keats:

"Give me books, fruit, french wine, fine weather and a little music out of doors by someone I do not know..."

Doesn't that evoke something beautiful? A warm summer day, relaxing with a trashy novel in a hammock... Isn't it lovely how just a few words strung together can do so much? It's so much better than my brainless paraphrase:

"Give me Entertainment Weekly, a bag of Doritos, a microbrewed beer, a partly sunny day and an mp3 filled with my bizarre music mix (Ratt may or may not be included)..."

Just doesn't quite have the same ring, does it?