Saturday, May 7, 2011

Want to, Have to, Need to...

The problem with regularly neglecting my blog, and then not posting for more than a week, is that just too many darn things happen, including the moments, which at the moment, I think would make good blog-fodder and so I take a picture (or two).

My computer is full of such photos.

Why not start off with the mimosa photo...taken this morning from Shades in Ocean Beach with Mik, Betty, Michael, Irene, Walter and me in attendance
I ran 10 miles last week, so I backed off to 8.5 this week. Next week, I'll run 12. It'll be my longest run before the Rock & Roll 1/2 Marathon. Today was an easy run for me. I used the same "take it easy in the beginning" strategy. In fact, it was the same route that we did two weeks ago when I belly-flopped and skinned up my hand. Only this time I managed to not fall on my face.

Walter ran with me for most of the morning, but he decided to run to a friend's house. We'd been there two weeks ago on Sunday, and laughed that some morning, on one of our runs, we'd just drop by to say, "hello!" He dropped by. I did not. I flipped a U and headed back to the start to get my 8.5 miles in.

Last Sunday, Walter and I got to enjoy an absolutely fabulous sunset from the deck of our friends home. They have, according to Walter, "one of the best homes in San Diego." No lie. There is NO WAY to be on this deck and NOT have a beer...which is also what Walter did at 8:30 this morning.

Another random photo from last week....Last Saturday night, Betty and I met up with Kat at The Belly Up, in Solana Beach to listen to B-Side. Elsie's tenant plays in the band, but she was tired and we couldn't shame her into joining us. Betty and I had dinner with the hubbies before the show. As is their typical behavior, they did NOT join us on the dance floor. No matter... 
Also taken last Saturday morning...we ran on the Mission Beach boardwalk. I mentioned to Betty that it'd been awhile since I'd taken a sweaty picture of it. I'm sure she thinks she lucked out and that this lovely shot of us disappeared into my iPhoto folder. Betty and I had great runs that morning. I ran 10 and she ran 9.2.
Yet another, previously unpublished photo, taken last Friday when I rode my bike around Fiesta Island in the afternoon. It was a little windy, but overall a lovely ride. 
Then there are those events for which I have no photos...including:
  • Monday night: Dinner Club - Elsie asks the Ken Club bartender what kinds of wine are available. Bartender says, "We have red...and white." Elsie decides to have a cosmo. Bartender says, "excellent decision."
  • Wednesday night: Madge, Betty and I have dinner at Mona's new house. It is fabulous and Mona is an extraordinary cook. We eat and drink and laugh and eat some more. At 10:30, Walter texts me, "are you OK?"
So...where am I going with all of this?

It's been "Literary Arts Festival" week at the college where I teach. I have some really excellent, creative, hardworking colleagues who put it all together. This year, there were two writers who came to talk to students about writing in general, and to read their writing specifically. I went to listen to both readings.

The first was Dorothy Allison. She talked about how writers have to take risks, and to write about the things that make us just a little bit afraid. Fiction writers (and probably non-fiction as well) take these things, and then tell lies about them. 

Lord knows that I have been known to embellish some things on this blog. In retelling some of our adventures, I may change the order of events, mostly to clarify a story but also for comic effect ...but usually I just report (I NEVER embellish running stats). 

I do love the idea of writing about those things which make us afraid...or even just a little bit nervous. I think some of the best blog posts I've written were ones that made me nervous. The ones where I paused, even for just a bit, before I hit "Publish Post." There are certainly some things that I don't write about because it would be hurtful to someone I know. Most of these topics, however, generally have nothing to do with running. They're just ideas that I have in my head.

On Thursday night, I went to hear Roger Bonair-Agard. If you want to read his poetry, you can look here, but if you really want to get a sense of him as a poet, you have to see it. If you don't really like poetry, go see it anyway. It's really not going to be what you expect.

Anyway...he talked afterwards about being a writer who doesn't write because he wants to, but because he MUST write.  For most of us, we'll never make a living from this writing gig; writers write because we cannot imagine life without it. 

Listening to Dorothy or Roger talk about writing was both inspirational and also made me feel a little guilty that I'd been neglecting my blog. I ever expect to make a living from writing, but I write here now because I cannot imagine NOT writing, and that made me feel more writerly...sorta in the same way that running with the track club makes me feel like a runner...not the type of runner who is going to win awards, just the kind who runs because she needs to, they both made me feel more like a writer.

All of which makes for a lousy-boring-listy blog today, but it's something that I just had to do.


  1. That wasn't boring at all! You've been one busy bee, my friend!

  2. I sure wouldn't want try to earn a living as a writer, though my work usually has a writing element in it, that is if writing software requirements or documenting business process stuff counts as writing. To me, writing on my blog about workouts is just part of the experience. Rants are something else.

  3. Geez, you are a social butterfly. Will you be organizing a runner meetup for some adult beverages after SD RnR? I won't be running, but have some friends that will and can buy you and Irene a beer.

  4. WOW, girl, I thought I had missed out on blogging about STUFF but you are full of fun and need another five paragraphs to share all your events.
    I can't believe the half is almost here, how exciting!!

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  6. My computer is acting up. I lost comments twice, then it showed up before I was finished with it!

    "Write about the things that make us just a little bit afraid." Wow. That sentence resonated something in me. I would have loved to hear Dorothy Allison speak.

    This was hardly a boring listy blog post. You're certainly busy! As far as neglected goes, my blog has cobwebs.

    Hmmmm... Chris mentioned adult beverages post SDRNR...

  7. You are so busy and I learn so much from you. Happy Mothers Day Alice!

  8. Man! Lost my comment there!

    Love the line from Dorothy Allison. I'm going to print that out and stick it in my study.

    Love the photos and the updates - keep them coming!

  9. I know what you mean about the compulsion to both write and run ... and the difficulty fitting it all in.

    Nice post -- not boring at all!

    Happy Mother's Day, AKA!

  10. I'd hoped for a similar infusion of motivation when I hung out with writer types the other weekend. Your contribution is much more exciting.

  11. I read, but got stuck on Walter's 8:30 beer. It sounded lovely.