Friday, October 28, 2005

This is a sentence.

Darcy talks, she's got a few good words and some sounds that are close enough for us to know what she's trying to say. Her word of the week this week has been "hot". She knows that if her food is hot then she needs to blow on it. Yes, because her parents are to lazy to do everything for her. While she does know the meaning most of the time there are the occasions when I realize that she hasn't quite mastered it yet. Like when she's pushing around the computer chair saying, "Hot. Hot. Hot." No, not exactly sweety.

But just ask her about her day and she'll go on for a while without letting you get a word in edge wise. For the most part, however, she is fairly incomprehensible. Here's a typical sample of a conversation.

"Darcy what did you do today?"

"Ehhflaph ooob llalallaharramm mamama shhheeeplal bbbb tta."

Tonight was a different story. She found a couple of divided plates that we haven't used yet and started carrying them around like they were the greatest toys ever made. Not too surprising, she loves new things (typical woman). Another good word she has is "hat". She'll go and get her hat when told to and put it on or bring it to you and say, "Hat." Well, she decided that her divided plates were to be worn on her head. So I asked her about it.

"Darcy what is that?"

"This is a hat."

It was as clear as day. Sue was sitting beside me on the couch and we both looked at each other at the same time and said, "This is a hat."

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Marathon Day

Today was the day, my friend Jake ran his marathon. It was cool, but dry. All week the forecast for the weekend was for rain both Saturday and Sunday. So I was grateful he had great conditions to race in. It is the only marathon in the world (so I hear) that feature two international border crossings. They start in downtown Detroit and run across the Ambassador Bridge, then along the river in Windsor and back to Detroit through the Tunnel. Running through the tunnel is the only 'underwater mile' in the world. You even get a split time for your underwater mile.

I went downtown early this morning to watch and try to find Jake to take a few pictures. Just as I got there the first runner went by, then a few wheel chair people and some more runners. They were moving. Jake was running in the '3:45' pace group and he had told me that he'd be wearing a red shirt and an orange cap. Thing is, there was a lot of people wearing red shirts or orange caps. Finally, I saw him and yelled out. He came over and I ran with him for 30 seconds or so.

He looked good and I talked to him early in the afternoon. At mile 20, typically known as "the wall", his knees started to hurt and he fell off the pace. He finished in 4 hours. Very cool, that's a long way to go and I know he's happy with his first effort.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

No Favorites

Normann Stadler:
2004 - Ironman World Champion.
2005 - 3 flat tires, 1 bee sting, 1 thrown bike, lots of tears & DNF.

This is not how a champion is supposed to look while defending his title. But the lava fields don't discriminate.

Heather Fuhr:
Second on the all-time Ironman win list.

She started the run, her strongest portion, within reach of the podium. Then the wheels feel off. She gutted it out and got her finishers medal because beating your own inner demons is a big victory in itself.

Monday, October 17, 2005

This is why I don't gamble

Neither if my picks to win the Ironman came through. Peter Reid finished third in a time of 8:20, a full twenty minutes faster than last year, but still six minutes off the pace. Heather Fuhr finished a disappointing 25th in the women's field, I wonder if she had trouble or got sick. Her run time was really slow, for her... Still her time of 10:03 is not really shameful. Windsor's two Iron(wo)man competitors really showed their stuff on Saturday.

Shelley McKee has great lead up and time in Kona stories on her blog. As well as some pictures, but those seem to be giving her template trouble. She finished in 14:36. I'm sure she'll remember that forever.

Blaire Kniaziew lived up to her qualifying time and finished in 10:27. That was good enough for eighth, in her age group, IN THE WORLD. Insane.

Getting back to gambling... Darcy wasn't eating her chunk of burger tonight. Instead she was rolling them like dice. She's 16 months and playing craps already. Casino Windsor, here we come! Although we've really got to put a stop to playing craps at the dinner table.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

The BIG One

This weekend is the Ironman Triathlon World Championships, Windsor has two people going for broke. Not so secretly, I'm envying anyone who's racing. I mean Hawaii in October (I'm not picky, any time of year would be fine), with the best of the best racing along side you? That would be so amazing. It's compared to playing in the Masters with all the greats of the PGA.

In truth there is very little chance that you'd race "along side" the pros. They get a head start of 15 minutes and are freakishly fast. The chance that I would ever compete is Hawaii is pretty much just a fantasy. You have to qualify to get in. But there is a back door for getting into the race. Every year there are 150 lottery spots; 100 of those are designated to US citizens and the remaining 50 are picked randomly from entrants around the world. The odds are rather staggering that you'll get picked.

Back to the part about people from Windsor racing. One of them, Blaire Kniaziew, actually qualified for her age group by coming second at Ironman Germany this summer (an insane time of 10:24). She teaches at the high school two blocks from our house. When she's not teaching, she doing triathlon. This past weekend she competed at the World Championships for the Olympic distance, in Honolulu, and finished 13th in her age group. The other, Shelley McKee, rolled the dice and got picked in the lottery. Good luck to both of them.

If you're interested, there's lots of interactive stuff about the race here. I'm picking an all Canadian championship. Peter Reid will bring home his forth title and Heather Fuhr will improve on her second place finish from last year to claim her second title.

Going Digital

That's right, the Titcombes of Windsor have moved up the social ladder to join the ranks of those who have abandoned conventional photography for digital. I believe the proper expression for such a leap in dans is "Yee Haw!" Sue's mom combined our birthday and Christmas presents and bought us a digital camera. It's a Kodak Z700.

After Darcy went to bed last night, I took this picture. Look her foot falling out of the crib.

Tonight for dinner she had eaten practically a whole put of macaroni, so she was rewarded with a chocolate covered graham cracker. Please notice the chocolate coating on Darcy's teeth.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Fast Times

I wrote previously that Jake had put up an awesome time of 21:05. Saturday I did a hard run and came out with a new PB of 21:11. Now Jake always sprints the last 100 metres or more of his runs, I did not sprint at all. My time put me one second per kilometre slower than Jake. I know I can go one second per kilometre faster for the first four and then two seconds faster for the last kilometre.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Two Great Debates

It is said that the first step to recovery is admitting the problem. What do you do, however, if your spouse thinks you have a problem, but you really don't think it's a problem?

It's no secret, I wear bike shorts. Those extra tight spandex shorts with the built in pad, I wear them every time I ride my bike. At first I was ashamed, I even said to the guys at work, "I did something I'm not proud of, but it had to happen ... I bought bike shorts." It took a little while to get used to them and I still generally keep my shirt untucked. I mean my butt looks good, but I don't want to be a distraction to motorists. Yeah, that must be it.

But you know what; I really like them! They're comfortable, the pad really eases saddle sore and they've got these little rubber legs grippers that keep them from riding up on me.

The first debate is this: To wear bike shorts or to not wear bike shorts? A warning, there is very little that will convince me to not wear them.

I have been told that I'm not allowed to shave my legs. There's not a big debate there, I don't want to shave my legs. But combining bike shorts with unshaved legs leads to the second debate.

Should the hair come through the spandex?

Now I have two pairs of bike shorts, my daily shorts and my race shorts. My daily shorts are not the top of the line, so the hair shows through more readily than the race shorts, which are a very high quality.

Recent posts on some other blogs have lead me to believe that such discussion about undergarments is kosher.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Race for the Nano Update

So we are eight weeks out from the innugural DigiPrint Road Race. It looks like there will only be three competitors, Chris, Jake and myself going for the Nano.

Jake really set the bar last week. Instead of going for one of his marathon training runs, he went for a hard 5 km and turned in a time of 21:05. That's 90 seconds better than his previous best and a minute better than I've done, so far. His marathon is right around the corner; he did his last long run this weekend, 20 miles. The program he's used has really worked for him, he knows he'll be fine for the race. His long runs have been after pretty heavy weeks of running, so he's felt tired (Yeah, 'cause you're not supposed to feel tired after running 20miles!). Now he's into his taper and will be fresh come race day. His goal is 3:45, but says that it should probably be 4 hours. My money is on 3:45.

Chris has come back to earth a little from his first few runs. He's felt really sore (due to his age) add to that the grind of working full time, parenting two kids, working on the second year of his MBA and trying squeeze building up to a 5km race. I know he'll show up to play on game day.

I've been keeping steady. Most of my runs were only 5km, but I've started to increase my mileage. I've discovered a nice little 6 or 7 km out and back route that I've used most recently. It's nice to do long, slow distances, in running circles it's called LSD. I still get out two times a week, at most three times. My goal is that one run will be around race tempo and the other one or two will be to increase my base. At this point my goal over the winter months is to increase my distance so that I can do 10 km in the spring with relative ease.

It's 30C here today! Plus 76% humidity. And it's October! Needless to say I'm still biking to work.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Shoe Lover

Shoe Lover
Shoe Lover,
originally uploaded by Titcombes.
Clearly this girl has a thing for shoes. The picture was taken during the summer over at Auntie Jerilee's house. Darcy could have been playing with Auntie Jerilee, her most favorite person ever (because she doesn't make Darcy eat vegetables). Or Darcy could have been playing with her best friend Alisa, but she choose to spend about ten minutes trying to get Auntie Jerilee's garden shoe on. Once she'd get her foot in it, then she'd try to take a step. Her foot would of course come out and the whole process would start again.

Tonight while Sue and I were eating, Darcy started bringing Sue's shoes from the foyer into the living room. She would bring in one at a time and she made six trips. To my astonishment, when she was done there were three exact pairs of shoes in the living room. I didn't know she knew how to match shoes.

I see trouble ahead.