We’re just one short month shy of the fifth year anniversary of the photoblog. Given the permanent spring we’ve found ourselves stuck in, I decided to spend some time poking around in the archive, looking for photos to remind myself of what snow looks & feels like. Of course this is a slippery slope – once you start looking for snow it’s super easy to end up neck deep in puppy pics.
January 30th, 2011:Snowshoeing the Fells – Nate talked me into buying snowshoes. Great fun when the stuff is deep, but suffice to say they have not be useful this winter.
January 31st, 2010:Found some leftover snow! – from Willard Woods in Lexington. They’ve since passed some ordinance to prevent anyone from having an off-leash dog here on the weekends (sorry critter, your presence inconveniences the 1%).
February 1st, 2009:Superbowl Funday! – From our similarly snow-free year in San Francisco, at Ocean Beach. They also have changed their off-leash ordinance to restrict access to a small section of the beach.
February 2nd, 2008:Masked Maija – From Suzanne’s birthday party four rounds ago. Pre-Isaac, pre-Eben, it’s strange to even think of it.
January 13th, 2007: Making a break for it! – This one precedes the blog, but a happy memory regardless, a trip to Vermont where Miss Maija broke her leash to play with this chocolate lab. This was also the trip that bunnyslope came from.
A solid and interesting weekend. Five weeks to New Orleans, and I feel ready to go tonight. Next Sunday in Cambridge is the Super Sunday 5, a little pre-marathon party around Kendall Sq. Then, Patriots.
Song of the week, back to another Bon Iver track that swirled up around mile 16 yesterday. It’s entirely possible I need some new music.
Today marks the end of week 12 of 18 for training for New Orleans Marathon training, as well as week 1 of 18 for Green Bay (woo! for overlapping). This morning was also the Boston Prep 16 Miler in Derry, NH. I was (and I guess, am, or am trying to be) happy with my times today – despite a (“moderately challenging“) hilly course the first 13.1 was the fastest gun time (1:48:31) I’ve run in a half-marathon since… 2004? And my total 16 mile time was a PR (I have a local 16 mile route I run and my time today was ~2 minutes faster than my best there). Honestly the only thing that is bothering me is that I placed 47/50 in my age/sex division (M30-39) – this is disheartening. I know I really should be assessing myself against myself but it’s hard to look at the rest of the times and realize how slow I am in comparison with a competitive, motivated field.
But the Patriots won & are heading to the Super Bowl again so who am I to complain. All in all, all is well.
Song of the day is from Florence & the Machine – this came up randomly and kicked me across the last half mile.
I think I mentioned this before but since I have a tendency to repeat myself I’ll say it again. The Boston Prep 16 miler in Derry, NH is this weekend, and registration is still open! I have room in my car for anyone else who might need a ride up from Boston. The weather looks like it’ll be nice, sun out, above freezing. You should totally come run with us!
Although this is a preparatory race for Boston I’m not going to be running the marathon here again this year. That said, my fellow Boston Prepper VK is. He is trying to raising some cash for the Boston Arts Academy if you’re looking for a good cause and/or a tax write-off. I’m going to be volunteering at the race so if you’re interested in joining our little group for that check out this page and register with group TeamHB (PIN: 19761980).
I was going to post something else yesterday but as it’s not finished I’ll instead share this. After 20+ hours of being awake, 20+ miles run, a 20+ (ok, 35) point Patriot thumping of the Broncos to reach the AFC championship game again, I found myself at the Brighton Music Hall listening to the Scud Mountain Boys singing this song last night at 1am. An interesting day all around.
I’m not sure why daily mile thinks there were 53 weeks last year but no first week this year, but regardless. Today marks the end of week 10 of 18 in New Orlean’s Rock & Roll Marathon preparation. I bumped yesterday’s long run to 19 miles and have been feeling some effects from that since, but it’s a necessary evil as 3 of the next 5 weeks are scheduled 20′s. This weekend has been one of the warmest January weekends in Boston’s history – I was overdressed yesterday and quite comfortable running in shorts & no gloves today.
So – New Orleans. I’ve bit the bullet, booked my flight and hotel and now just need to find some sort of Sunday night tourist-type plan beyond the race to help justify the trip. It needs to fit into the realm of activities possible after running 4 hours (ie, nothing walking or standing) and in a best case scenario would involve a single impressive alligator or multiple smaller alligators. Ideas?
I don’t usually talk about investing on this site but hope you can humor as I’m just thinking this through as the new year gets rolling.
Last January I decided to put some money into a modified Dogs of the Dow strategy (basically, it involves buying the 10 stocks with highest dividend yields in the Dow – you can see all 30 of the Dow components here). I previously had been holding two of the stocks (Intel & Verizon) and decided to buy five more (AT&T, Kraft, Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Pfizer). I didn’t buy the three stocks with the lowest dividend yields (DuPont, McDonald’s and Chevron – McDonald’s went on to be the top Dow stock of 2011, up 31%). The seven stocks I did go into were up (for me) ~16% for the year (not counting dividends paid) which was decent compared to the Dow’s overall 2011 return of ~5% and the S&P500′s 0%.
This year I’ve decided to repeat the exercise, reducing my relatively overweight positions in Intel & Verizon and moving into DuPont and the two new members of the Dogs of the Dow, GE and Procter & Gamble. The whole plan is way less diversified than an index fund but in theory somewhat safer than blowing everything back into Apple.