Thursday, November 8, 2012


One week ago, Thing 1 came home with a little surprise for us.

And I said, "No.  Absolutely not."

Then a little while later, I said, "Okay but only for a couple of days.  This is not going to be permanent!"

I was so, so wrong.

We've got Trouble with a Capital T.

Meet Trouble, aka "Stinkerbelle" aka "Nala":

She's a 4 month old Something mix.  Rumor has it that mix is Chihuahua/Lab although we're all pretty skeptical on the Lab part of the mix.  Thing 1 says her litter mates were all much, much larger so maybe.

I'm not saying she's tiny but take here's a good comparison:
She was Thing 1's girlfriend's puppy but Girlfriend just moved to a new place and can't have pets so without asking permission from me, Thing 1 volunteered to take custody.

Again, without asking permission from me.  And I was adamant that I did not want another dog to take care of, especially a puppy.  I haven't had to deal with a puppy in YEARS!

Sadly, within just a few hours, I was smitten:
TheManTheMyth was smitten. 

And obviously, the BabyDaddy is smitten:

Thing 2 is, well, not QUITE as enamored but she does unbend slightly now and then:
Just look at those ears! 

Gracie Lou, however, is the lone holdout:
"Why dis stoopid puppee here?  Why it in my bed?  Why it eat my food?  Why it always want to wressel?"  Why it not leave me alone?  I hate you all.  I stick tung out at you!"

Here's some things to know about this here puppy:

1.  She's housebroken.  I KNOW!!!  She figured out the dog door within minutes and goes out on the grass and does her business and then comes running back in.  She has not had a single accident in the house.  Gracie Lou, on the other hand, crapped on the floor next to MY side of the bed the other night as a "Fuck You" and guess who unknowingly stepped in it and then got into bed?  That was fun.

2.  She's an Eager Eater.  She wolfs down her food and the marches over to Gracie Lou's bowl and tries to horn in on the action.  She practically does cartwheels with excitement when it's feeding time.

3.  She loves her toys.  Plays with them, all of them, throughout the day.  When I put her toys away, she immediately goes and drags them all out again.

4.  She has yet to destroy anything.  Yet.  I'm trying to be very vigilant about not keeping anything within reach that I don't want chewed up and when she DOES find something, I take it away immediately and give her one of her toys in exchange.  So far, so good.

5.  She loves Thing 1 best.  He is, after all, Daddy.  And she sleeps with him.

6. She's a better running partner than Gracie Lou.

7.  She's smart.  The 2nd time I took her for a walk around the block, she exactly which house was ours/hers and marched right up the steps.  When I tell her, "NO!"  she immediately stops and sits.  She knows "Stay."  And she's incredibly laid-back for a pocket dog.

8.  She doesn't like bicycles.

9.  She loves to snuggle.

10.  She loves to annoy Gracie Lou but also knows when not to push her luck and acknowledges Gracie Lou's Seniority in the household.

I didn't want another dog.  I was ADAMANT about not having another dog.

Uh huh, yeah.

Monday, November 5, 2012


No, you are not hallucinating.  It's an honest-to-goodness new blog post, the first one since July.

I have no reasons or excuses for not blogging other than I just couldn't seem to have anything to say or write about.

As that great philosopher, Steve Martin, once said, "Some people have a way with words.  Others not have way."


Now I have way.

And a story about how it's a long way to the top and how I made it there.

So gather 'round, children.

This is the story.

About a month or so ago, my sister asked if I wanted to do the Palm Springs Tram Road Challenge, a 6K event that goes up the, wait for it, Tram Road in Palm Springs.

Sure, I said.  She offered to sponsor me but I HAD to commit.

No problem, I said.
  So last weekend we made the 2 hour drive to Palm Springs.  After a good carb-load up for dinner, it was off to bed.  Where I tossed and turned all night long.

After getting up at the buttcrack of dawn and scarfing down half of a bagel (carbs), a yogurt (protein) and half a banana (potassium), we headed to the Tram Road to take the Challenge.

As we're walking across Hwy 111, a race official or someone tells us Good Luck and that the first 2.5 miles aren't bad but the last 1.7 will be hell.  Yeah, yeah, I think to myself,  *I'VE done a 5K and hiked to the top of the summit at Lake Tahoe.  I walk my dog in El Dorado Park every day.  I can do this easy pie!"  Despite numerous warnings from People Who Know These Things, I think to myself that it won't be THAT bad.

Oh, what fools these mortals be.

Pre-race pictures are a must:
Look at me, all happy and clueless with my friend Sandy. 

So Lisa, Sandy and Gaga go toward the front the pack for the start because they're running while my sister Bippy and I are a little further back.  Because we're Not Running.  The National Anthem is played and then 30 seconds later, we're off.  25 feet later, someone body slams me to the ground from behind and gives me a flat tire on my shoe.  And I'm all "Dude, what the hell?"  No idea who it was and nary an apology or even a "Sorry" pat on the back.  So I have to fight my way through the crowd and limp over to the side of the road so I can get my shoe back on and I see Bippy up ahead looking around like, "Where did she go?  She quit already?" (I wish) I get my shoe back on and then I started jogging so I could catch up with Bippy.  That was a mistake because it used up valuable energy.

The first 2 miles were not easy but if kept at a steady pace, it wasn't too bad. 

And then we hit Mile 2.5-ish and shit got real.  

My pace got slower and slower as my legs started turning to cooked spaghetti. I didn't feel winded (much) and my heart wasn't pounding (much) but my legs, especially my quads, were starting to put up a fight.  Bippy and I had already agreed that if one of us (that would be me) fell behind, to keep going and not get dragged down by the dead weight (that would be me).  I had to stop several times for about 30 seconds each to let my legs stop shaking and quivering and there were more than a few times I thought to myself, "I can't do this any more" but then I would tell myself, "Bippy will KICK. YOUR. ASS if you quit" so I kept plugging along.

I passed the 3 mile mark and knew it was only .7 miles to go but that .7 miles would make me its bitch.  I'm not saying I was going slow or anything but an 89 (EIGHTY NINE!!!) year old man with a recent hip replacement and using a cane passed me and left me in the dust.  While flashing me the "LOSER!" sign.  

I can see the finish, which is at the top of a STEEP hill and I am dying.  DYING.  I had visions of that woman triathlete who crossed the finish line on her hands and knees while puking and thought, "That is going to be me.  I will have to crawl across the finish line looking all pathetic" although I never had the urge to puke or faint.  Although I DID pass one lady who was puking at the side of the road.  So, yay me.  I think.

I'm barely shuffling along, trying not to collapse and then I hear, "There she is!" and there was my friend Lisa and another lady coming to get me to the finish. It's barely a 1/4 mile to the finish and I had to stop several times until my legs stopped shaking.  I climb to the finish and I really don't remember much about it.  The only thought I had was SIT DOWN AND DON'T MOVE.  Which is what I did.

I'd been sitting there for, oh, 3 minutes when Sandy, my friend Sandy, says, "Okay, let's head back down!" and everyone was all, "Sandy, Kelly CAN'T WALK.  We have to wait a bit.  You wouldn't want to just leave her here, would you?"

To which Sandy, my GOOD FRIEND Sandy, says, "Sure I would!"  Because Sandy's a Giver like that.

Luckily, the shuttle buses were ready to load passengers and we all climbed aboard and I wasn't left behind.   

I had estimated that it would take me 1.5 hours to finish and my time was 1:26:56.  

People asked me how I trained for the Tram Road Challenge and well, I, uh, DIDN'T.  And it showed.

When we were rehashing it later and saw our times, Bippy tells me, "Now for next year, you can set your goal for 1:15 and I'm thinking, "Yeah, no.  I think I can just consider this box checked."

And to add insult to injury, the winner of the Womens category was a 10 YEAR OLD GIRL.  Just kill me now.

When I finished the Seal Beach 5K, I was all, "Woo hoo!" and all happy and my adrenaline was high and I loved the experience.   Not so much with the Tram Road Challenge.  While I can be proud that I actually finished when a lot of people DNF'd, I definitely had my ass handed to me on a silver platter and that Tram Road said to me, "You've been schooled, bitch."  There's a reason it was called the Tram Road CHALLENGE.  Which should have been my first clue.

Special thanks to my sister Tracie aka "Bippy" for sponsoring my entry and keeping me more afraid to quit than dying, my friend Lisa Deaton aka "Miss Lisa" for pacing me that last 1/4 mile and of course, Del Taco for getting me to where I am today. 

Now, it's time to start training for the Surf City (Half) Marathon in February!  

It's MADNESS, I tell you!