metro stories: timber!

Setting: Tuesday, 5:32 p.m., Silver Line train, between McPherson Square and Farragut West. I am standing in the middle of the car reading Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error.

The woman in front of me bumped me, which I considered annoying but not noteworthy. (Welcome to metro at rush hour.) Then she bumped me again…and again, as though she wanted to get by me. I finally looked up from my book when she bumped my hard, and only then realized she was also demanding forcefully:

“Push me forward, girl!! Push me forward!!”

Then she truly lost her balance and fell over on me. Yep. So great. I braced myself against the bar (while she continued urging–loudly!–for me to push her back up) and shoved. She was righted, I was surprised and incensed and uncomfortable, and I think we were both relieved when she exited the train a few stops later. Always an adventure on the metro!

6.5 weeks away

The St. George Marathon is in 45 days (I was totally going to write a post when it was 49 days and thus seven weeks away, but that didn’t happen). My left calf has been hurting a LOT, which has been kind of a problem. I’m taking today off and icing it like a mad woman. I’ve been really fortunate/lucky in my training so far that I haven’t had bigger problems, so I’m optimistic that this will work out (even if not in time for my scheduled 18-miler later this week.)

Jason is no longer nocturnal! His last day was Friday night, which means we spent the weekend together, mostly trying to keep him awake.

I keep forgetting Labor Day a.k.a. Onion Days is soon. It seems like summer just started and yet my brothers went back to school today.

We made delicious steak tacos for lunch on Sunday from this Mexican cookbook from my parents. Per usual, Jason took care of cooking the steak. I made the avocado sauce, which–if I do say so myself–was pretty close to some of the addictive salsas we had in Mexico City. I think about that trip every day.

We finally broke down and bought a television, the first purchased TV of our marriage. We had a TV/VCR combo when we first got married, but it was old and I have no recollection of where it came from. Anyway, it perished long ago. Then in Kentucky Mary gave us her TV after they downsized from more-TVs-than-people in their townhouse. She had actually gotten the TV for free in a raffle, but it was a great little set and did well by us until last winter when it stopped working completely. We’ve left it on the bookshelf and every once in a while we try to turn it on, but to no avail; it is definitely dead. The new TV should be here on Friday, just in time for the college football season (and in time for me to stop using Jason’s ipad to do my workout videos. For some reason he doesn’t like it when I drip sweat on it.)

problems and prejudice

I’ve wanted to reread Pride and Prejudice since I saw it on Christina’s Goodreads list a couple weeks ago. Thus, I did what I always do and logged into the library website. I pulled up the catalog search and typed in “pride and prejudice.”

The first result? Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. This was followed by: Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, Darcy and Elizabeth, Prom and Prejudice, Death Comes to Pemberly, Prada and Prejudice, Pride and Prescience: A Truth Universally Acknowledged, Austenland, Mr. And Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy: Two Shall Become One (stop!!), Me and Mr. Darcy, A Wife for Mr. Darcy, Pride, Prejudice, and Cheese Grits: Austen Takes the South Volume 1, Mr. Darcy’s Daughters, The Darcy Cousins, Mr. Darcy Goes Over: A Tale of Tide and Prejudice, A Darcy Christmas, Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister, Darcy’s Temptations, Pemberly Shades: A Lightly Gothic Tale of Mr. and Mrs. Darcy. I wish I were making this up. You get the idea.

I didn’t find the original 1813 novel until the fifth page of results. Seriously? Now, I acknowledge that this is partly a problem with my library’s search algorithm, but it also pains me that there are so many spin-offs (of such questionable quality) of a great book.

The adventure didn’t end there. I put the book on hold and went to pick it up a few days later. The cover wasn’t one I was familiar with, but at this point I just wanted to get home and start reading it. When I turned the first page, I was surprised to discover that I had received the young reader edition. Yes, there is a young(ish) reader edition of Pride and Prejudice.

Things About the Young Reader Edition That Are Different From the Adult Reader Edition:

- Each and every page is bordered with what appears to be an image of the edge of a regency-era military waistcoat.

- Potentially unfamiliar words in the text are bolded and then defined at the bottom of the page.

- Every few chapters there is a little non-fiction chapter. Subjects include helpful tidbits about early nineteenth century life grouped into chapters like “Transportation in the Age of Jane Austen” and “English Balls at the Turn of the Century.”

- The type is very large.

I have tried my best to read this version, but am hampered by several things, not the least of which is that I keep getting distracted by the bolded words. (“Five thousand a year? I am pretty sure that is just what it sounds like and what I have assumed to be true of every other Austen novel I have ever read. Maybe I should look it up in case I have been mislead all along! Nope, just what I though. Now, where was I?”) The whole thing is sort of hilarious but also frustrating if one is trying to read!

I’m returning it to the library tomorrow and ordering my own darn copy from Amazon.

(last sleep-deprived) weekend

On Saturday morning Jason and I got home at the same time: he from work and me from a quick run. We went to the grocery store and had breakfast together before he collapsed into a nap-coma for two hours. Meanwhile I made pizza for lunch. We hit the library in the early afternoon so I could pick up the books I had on hold and we ate our first corn on the cob of the season for an early supper. Jason went to bed at 8 p.m., right after we talked to his parents, and I thought that sounded like a nice time to take a little nap. He woke up just before 1 a.m. and I slept all night. Yes, I got ten hours of sleep on Saturday night. I assume this means I needed it and I’m not just the laziest person in the whole world?

We had homemade meatballs with some legit Italian spaghetti when Jason got home from church (around 3:45 p.m. He is a busy man on the sabbath). Fifteen minutes later he was sound asleep. I put on an old pair of gym shoes and my GPS watch and headed out for my regular Sunday walk. I called my mom but Hannah answered and it turned out we hadn’t talked in a while; our conversation lasted two hours, after which I talked to my mom for a bit. At this point I was thirsty and tired and had just walked my eleventh mile, so I stopped at the church for sustenance. Weirdly the church was all locked up at 8 p.m. I thought for sure there would be a fireside or something going on. I called my grandparents for the last bit of the walk and soldiered on for another three miles (because really what other choice did I have?). 2 miles to church + 14 miles of talking = some prodigious Sunday walking.

Other things that happened last week:
– A leader from another ward thought I was one of the YW at our Tuesday night activity. (This is not the first time this has happened.) I know, I know, I’ll appreciate my youthful face when I’m older. For now, though, I just want to clarify whether she thought I was a Mia Maid or a Laurel. That makes a difference.

- I finished Escape from Camp 14, about a prisoner’s escape from North Korea. Unfortunately, a library patron who read the book before me had marked it up with pencil. Usually I’m all for marking one’s books, but 1. This is a library book! and 2. The marks made me think the person was a moron. Literally every other word was underlined (not sure how that is helpful) and there were all these snarky asides in what appeared to be old lady penmanship. Next to a sentence about how North Korea’s human rights abuses are unparalleled because prison camps have been operating for 50+ years, this pleasant human wrote “Try Stalin!” Seriously? It was bizarre.

- We cleaned out our closets on Saturday, something I’ve been resisting but was good to get done. Favorite finds: my Rubber Soul two-in-one tee and long-sleeve shirt combo from freshman year, the t-shirt Jason bought when he went on a college visit to BYU with his dad, and a card my roommates and I–though based on the handwriting I wasn’t super involved–made for Jason’s 22nd birthday.

16 miles + (nationals x 3)

Yesterday was another good Thursday for lots of reasons, one being that it felt decidedly like a Friday. I woke up early thinking it was time to get ready for my long run. I warmed up my breakfast, sat down at the kitchen table to eat it and thought “Shoot, I am really tired.” Then I looked at the clock and realized it was 1:00 a.m. and that I was still tired because I had gotten only some forty minutes of sleep so far. I put my breakfast in the fridge and went back to sleep.

Unfortunately, I then woke up almost an hour later than intended. Thanks to some night-before planning, I was able to gird up my fuel belt and get out the door in 25 minutes flat. It was a little more humid than I would have preferred, but I was saved for the first eight or so miles by serious cloud cover. Miles 9-13 were okay, but I was ready to be done by 14. I finished up the full 16 in 2:22:02 and promptly purchased a bottled water from Sunoco to quench my thirst. I need to figure out a better fueling strategy. I had enough water and powerade for the run, but the fruit snacks that were supposed to give me energy just turned my stomach.

I hopped on the Metro and made it into work in time for our summer retreat to a Nationals game (my third of the summer, which I think ties my previous record).

Inasmuch as the weather at our last work baseball game was muggy, yesterday was beautiful: not too hot, not too humid, and a really pleasant breeze. We had snacks before the game then picked up french fries in an early inning. At the point I still felt pretty awake.

I wanted to get a Nationals shirt, but so many of the women’s shirts are either pink or hideous or both. So lame. After some serious sleuthing I did finally find a Harper shirt that I really liked (that turned out to be a children’s shirt) (but I bought it anyway). I started getting sleepy around the sixth inning and headed out after the seventh. When I got home, I fell asleep on the couch reading Moneyball and woke up two hours later because I was famished.

I talked to my dad for a bit and told him about the game, which I assumed the Nats had won as they were ahead when I left. When I looked up the box score online, though, I realized it had been a thriller: 13 innings and a walk-off home run from Bryce Harper. Serves me right for leaving early, even if I couldn’t keep my eyes open.

The rest of the evening was spent 1. making Jason’s lunch, 2. enjoying the hour that Jason and I are both awake and in the same place at the same time, and 3. finishing Five for Sorrow, Ten for Joy (#91).

things that made thursday the best day of this week

- Running fifteen miles. I was planning to go from our place to Rosslyn (adding in some extra loops to make it a full fifteen), but when I left the apartment I wanted to run this old loop that I haven’t done in a while. I spent a good chunk of the run trying to calculate routes in my head, but it all worked out and I finished in what I consider a good time.

- Making it to the orthodontist to get my permanent retainer fixed. One side of my flashy gold wire came loose last week, which was a minor annoyance at first that evolved into a major annoyance. Thankfully I texted a friend with kids from the ward and she directed me to an excellent orthodontist. He fixed up my retainer and I went on my way.

- Lunching with Jason after my appointment + getting to see him in daylight hours.

- Driving to work, which cuts my commute in half and allows me to bring home stuff that has accumulated in my office (in this case a pair of shoes, some tupperware, a new dress, and a running tank I plan to return).

- Going out to Cafe Rio with a good friend for dinner.

- Baking brownies for Jason’s office, which meant having to taste test them. My Grandma Pullan’s brownie recipe is the best.

july, by the numbers

71 days until Mariel’s wedding. So this is really happening! Tickets purchased, which means Jason and I will be spending approximately a third of October in Utah. We are pretty excited about that.

65 days until the marathon. See above. Some days I think, “Oh yeah, of course I can run 26.2 miles.” Then there are other days.

29 days until the BYU football season begins. Tickets bought.

131 miles run, a new month record. Previous record: May 2013.

39 miles worth of Sunday walks, usually while talking to my mom or sisters. Tracking these walks is just another reason I love my last year’s birthday GPS watch.

12 books read (of 87 so far in 2014). Favorites: All Joy and No Fun: The Paradox of Modern Parenting and Maus.

10 fewer minutes spent commuting, thanks to the Silver Line. I’m a fan.

3.5 bottles of pesto devoured. Also, 3 boxes of Israeli couscous (9 servings).

2.7 weeks left of Jason’s nocturnal schedule. This hasn’t been as terrible as I thought it would be, though I am surely looking forward to spending more than one hour a day with my husband.

1.5 skeins of yarn used up. Domesticity achieved.