I have no clue what to put here.
Perhaps some sort of rotating quote.
Dunno.

But those guys to the right...they're snorkeling off of Rum Point,
on Grand Cayman. You owe it to yourself to check that place out.



2.18.2020

Another Year Down!

Yesterday marked the 3 year anniversary of my cancer diagnosis. With every passing year, my odds of a normal life expectancy increase. 3 years is a pretty big milestone. 5 is the ultimate goal...though still no guarantee. It's still not rare for colorectal cancer cells to linger "dormant" for a decade or more.

But I'll take my 3, gladly! Especially as one who has had a lung metastasis. The vast majority of stage 4 colorectal cancer patients require chemo for life. And that life is often relatively short, unfortunately. I've already lost so many friends to this disease. Fit, otherwise healthy people <50.

Last night I celebrated by attending my monthly bunco game...and eating so much delicious junk. Then arrived home to leftover pizza -- yay!

Today I finally got around to applying some sweet decals to my Christmas present 2019 Canyon Speedmax CF 8.0 tri bike. A friend-of-friends does vinyl decals and designed it for me. It looks so amazing! I'll be adding some random red and blue stars. Those aren't my fancy aero wheels in the photo. My good wheels have yellow (Mavic) decals that the WW decal nicely picks-up. Eventually my pursuit bars will have blue bar tape to match the blue in these decals (and the blue stars). I really can't wait to ride this outdoors, in spite of the fact that I'm pretty happy to roll around on Zwift most of  the time. I don't have to worry about inattentive or downright aggressive motorists on Zwift.

I also spent a decent amount of time, today, working on my terrarium and researching potential occupants. It's been a long-term work-in progress. At one point it was a paludarium with a water feature and briefly held about a half-dozen red devil crabs. They were adorable and entertaining, but the largest one was a serious asshole and went around beating up and killing all of his tankmates...until he was alone and died an angry little man (I think it was a male, anyhow). They aren't typically a species that doesn't play well together, but it apparently only takes one rotten apple.

I'm not entirely pleased with my current set-up, but it's mostly because I'm working with the limitations of using a 29g aquarium as a terrarium (and a section of the glass has horrible limescale build-up that we've been unable to remove from a "crabitat" water feature). A purpose-built terrarium would be be preferable. Something taller and deeper. Someday when all the fish in my 50g aquarium are gone, I want to put a terrarium with the same footprint on that stand. My aquarium is 36x18x18. I'd like a 24" tall terrarium with doors that open on the front, rather than trying to dig around from overhead to prune plants. I really enjoy the planted/scaped aspect of terrarium/vivariums and would like to be able to have some taller plants. Perhaps with a couple of rough green snakes (very small, skinny, bright green snakes that eat only bugs -- no rodent friends for dinner). Or maybe more frogs.

Ranitomeya amazonica 
I'm kind of smitten with these tiny guys. They're a "thumbnail" poison dart frog. It appears that they will get along in small groups, so 3-4 should do OK in my set-up. And they will love all of my dwarf bromeliads. They should happily hang out in those and breed in ones that hold water in their center cups (fun fact, pineapple are bromeliads!).

I won't likely be adding any little frogs to my terrarium until May. We're planning a week-long road-trip out West and these little guys need daily feeding until they are full-grown. I don't know anyone locally who I could trust to come in every day to feed wingless fruit flies or teensy crickets. Plus I may have to have them overnight shipped and it's still too cold for little froggies to travel to MI.

Fxck Cancer!


2.12.2020

I'm Toast!

Every birthday since 34 I've logged on-foot or on-bike some sort of numerically significantly distance, as I started running just after my 33rd bday. The runs were generally something like 1/10 - 1/5 my age, because I'm not so unhinged as to run my age (though I DO have friends of questionable sanity who run their age -- but most of them have warmer weather birthdays, live in places that don't have a legit Winter, or are actual ultra runners who think nothing of throwing-down a few runs > marathon distance/year). Cycling my age has never been an unreasonable # of miles...but riding indoors pre-Zwift just plain sucked, even for what would be modest outdoor mileage.

Last year was my first birthday with Zwift and I was recovered enough from 2017 Cancer treatments and surgeries and ileostomy reversal in Spring of 2018 to log my 46 miles on the nowhere bike.

Today's 47 miles played out similarly...my lungs are likely closing-in on as well-adapted as I can expect after losing my right upper lobe, early last May (the remaining lobes expand to fill much of the space and work of the missing lobe).

I logged 25 miles solo in "Watopia", changed into a clean, sweat-free kit, pee'd, grabbed a snack, then trundled back down to the basement to finish my distance with a group event on the cyber-rendition of Richmond, VA's UCI World Championships course. The last 6ish miles of that ride were solo, again, including the climb-y bits of the course.

I feel incredibly fortunate to still be alive, much less fitter than probably 3/4 of women my age. This morning I learned that another member of the colorectal cancer community is no longer with us. Another woman who was fit, otherwise healthy, and <50 when diagnosed. Yet another reminder that this is not solely a disease afflicting sedentary, elderly people.

I don't know how many more years I'll be able to "ride my age," but I'll continue to do so for as long as my health allows. Perhaps at 50 or 60 I'll need to set a goal of 1/2 the miles corresponding to my years on the planet. But to not do at least that much feels like it would be to squander the gift of continued existence, even if Cancer has slowed me down, a bit.


Fxck Cancer!


2.11.2020

By Popular Demand

Posting only because I always seem to lose track of this image (and runner friends are regularly trying to locate it, as well). It's been over a decade since I last ran a marathon, but I am still no stranger to "tweaks" the week or so before a big race (mostly duathlons, in recent years -- Olympic distance is my jam). Nowadays I have more scanxiety in my life than I do taper madness....


I have no idea who created this graphic, but it's good stuff and a true classic.


Fxck Cancer!