how can you not be moved?

“And though the meaning fits, there’s no relief in this. I miss my beautiful friend.” ~Jeff Buckley

This is still my favorite version, by a man gone too soon.  A talented, gritty, poignant story…and yes.  It does beg the question.  Maybe.  Maybe there’s a God above.

You will be moved by this version.


Love for Arts
Image via Wikipedia

I will do anything to get my point across to students who don’t find the relevance in the stuff I have to teach.  Sophomores are reading A MidSummer Night’s Dream.  Shakespeare is hard on any given day for any of us, but when you’re 15 years old, earning F’s in all classes, are tardy every day and could care less about the standards and the testing and the school’s money…well, Shakespeare is like putting forks in your eyes.  And mine.

I’ve given them the basic premise.  We read it daily.  Then I thought…let’s just put this out there.  How about this.  You bring in lyrics that tell of unrequited love.  Missed connections.  Heartbreak.  Another teacher said, “Why are you doing that?  They’re not going to do it anyway.”  Ah yes, so I should just fail them every day and keep on with the “thous” and “doest”.  Um.  No.

Because I’m shameless, and will do almost anything to drive a point home, I plowed ahead with the project.  And here is what I got.  I rarely blog about my students any more, but while I’m on a training hiatus, I thought I’d share exactly what a 15 year old thinks about Shakespeare…and about love.

The last one is the song I’m currrently singing.  See?  They’re not so different from us…teenagers.  I think they get it.  Shakespeare… What do you think?  I think Will would approve.  Heartbreak.  Long lost love.  If you’re 15, you understand.

Game On

Tonight, as I was getting ready for my next run, I was getting my list for packing and fixing my playlist.  I realized that I have not gotten to this place on my own.  I started thinking of all the people who I have met and have embraced…not just my fabulous coach, but folks on Twitter, family, friends.  Kim called, and said, Linda I was looking at the plan.  We’re not running tonight.  We ALWAYS run on Tuesday. 

Workout plan #fail. I just didn’t pay attention.  So I did this instead…

So, here is the partial list of my music for the LA Marathon (the @ sign indicates a Twitter handle)

@hendy2 No Surprise, Daughtry

@gwjones00 Venus, Bananarama

@alitherunner: One More Time for the Womankind, Annie Lennox

@speedysasquatch: Hit the Road Jack, Ray Charles

@bolese22: Wonderful Night, Fatboy Slim

@runningrealtor: Gypsies, Tramps & Theives, Cher

@anotorias: Bad Romance, Lady Gaga

@judas_hannibal: Temple_Saint, Byrne

@misterfonzie: Alone, Heart

@runnrgrl: Sexy Bitch

@nturnage: Sweet Caroline, Neil Diamond

for everyone:  Bohemian Rhapsody, Queen

For my little sister:  Respect, Aretha Franklin

For my older little sister: Love Shack, B52s

For my 4th period students:  Billy Jean, Michael

All Twitterati Runners:  Till I Collapse, Eminem

My running partner Kim:  Run So Far Away, Flock of Seagulls

My running store, Fleet Feet:  Lodi, Creedence Clearwater Revival

Mona: I Run For Life, Melissa Etheredge

For my Future Husband:  Better, Tom Baxter

For Me:  Spirit in the Sky, Norman Greenbaum, in case I keel over while running, please play this at my funeral.

Events for the weekend:

Thursday night after work, drive to Woodland Hills to see my family!!

Friday:  Lunch with @ncjack and others. See @bemadthen Expo at 11am.  Home.

Saturday:  10am, Blessing of the Shoes, 4:45 dinner with Mom & Pete Carroll

Sunday:  Hot shower, wheat bread & pb, banana.  Slug of coffee.  Race at 6:20

Pre-Marathon Checklist:

Things that must be in bag to race & bring to race

  • iPod
  • Garmin
  • Chapstick
  • Gum
  • Fuel Belt
  • 8 Honey Stingers
  • Garbage Bag
  • Hair rubber band + clips


Marathon Day

  • Garbage Bag
  • Chip & Bib
  • Sunglasses
  • Visor
  • Chapstick
  • Sunscreen

Things to have in suitcase

  • iPod plug
  • Garmin plug
  • iPhone plug
  • Running Shoes A & B (A=marathon, B=backup)
  • Shoe inserts
  • Socks (2 pair, one for race day)
  • Spirit of the Marathon DVD
  • The Quotable Runner
  • Email from LA Marathon on Final Race Instructions
  • Compression Socks
  • Black + Black + Dirty Red leggings (marathon day)
  • Black + Purple + blue/black leggings (run day before)
  • Head Sweats visor
  • Deodorant
  • Sunscreen
  • Race confirmation ticket/brochure
  • Vaseline
  • S-Caps
  • Multi-Vitamin
  • Vitamin D
  • Razors
  • Floss/Threaders
  • Baby Powder


Things for post race marathon bag (leave with Kenny)

  • Black running skirt
  • Flip flops
  • Yellow tank
  • Sunglasses
  • ID/wallet etc.
  • Shannon’s t-shirt
  • S-Caps


  • Nutrition:
    Honey Stingers (4 GUs + 2 extras) 
    Whole wheat bread
    Peanut butter
    Fig Newtons
    Protein Bars x3 (before & after race)
    Large Coconut water
    Large Gatorade

The little race that almost wasn’t

Have you ever had a race or a run that was simply pure joy?  I mean, every step of the way?  Today was that race for me.  I am one week away from the LA Marathon, and I was asked to join a 2 man Half Marathon Relay at the ShamrockNHalf at Raley Field in Sacramento.

I was thrilled to do it, because I’m in taper week #2 now, and I knew this would keep me slightly de-focused for the marathon, and it was a short distance.  Also, my new Twitter friend Row, had taken me as a guest to her gym for a spin class, and I wanted to give back just a little bit.  Her husband’s partner dropped out, so he needed a teammate.

Enter Ms. V

The night before, I was treated to 3 hours of WWE Smackdown at the Stockton Arena.  I promised my son I would take him there, and about halfway in, I was totally over the fake fighting (wait, it’s fake, right?)  The only thing that intrigued me was the music, and how it would fit in a playlist.  But I digress.

Coupled with a midnight bedtime, daily savings was going to blow.  I was up at 4am, showered, ate my pre-breakfast, and my now pre-ritual of a half a cup of coffee.  I didn’t think I had much gas, and was hoping not  to let my friend down.

Driving to Sacramento was ROUGH.  I was so tired, but I knew by the time I got there, I would be fine.  I had to be.

There’s something different about a relay.  You’re responsible for your partner.  You can’t really blow it, because they’re waiting for you to come in.  There’s no DNF in a relay.  I mean you have to be losing a kidney to stop.

Mile 1 over the Sacramento Bridge.  Great music.  I knew the music I put on this iPod was going to be fun, and it was.  Repeat.  Mile after Mile.  Never stopped, took no water, just ran. 

Oh, the way I felt.  Not like I was flying, but that I was running.  And I loved it.   At one point, I looked at Crash, and I was running a 9:16 mile.  Without trying.



7.1 miles

10:16 pace








Today’s Playlist made the run enjoyable, and to think:  I nearly missed this race.  Thank you to all the people who support me every day.

I smiled with every song.

Wonderful Night 4:46 Fatboy Slim 

Au Fond du Temple Saint 4:50 David Byrne 

Bad Romance 4:55 Lady Gaga 

 Jump around  3:30 House Of Pain  

Poker Face Lady GaGa

Psycho (feat. Eminem) 4:46 50 Cent 

Hit the Road Jack 2:04 Ray Charles   

Ballroom Blitz 4:03 Blue Oyster Cult    

What Is Love 4:30 Haddaway 

 American Pie 8:32 Don McLean    

Ready Steady Go (Album Version) 4:16 Paul Oakenfold  

155 3:30 +44 (GREAT song!!!)

Break Your Heart (feat. Ludacris) 3:06 Taio Cruz (Brand new #1 song this week…GREAT!)

Yes We Can  – Obama Song

Lose Yourself 5:32 Eminem 

Happy Day!!

@HellaSound Rocks


If you haven’t used this website yet, I say get thee now to Hella Sound, and check out the one song you need to shake up your run.  It’s one song…set to your cadence…The song is called How To Turn Around A Bad Day“, and John Frenette, owner of the company is one great guy.  You can follow him on Twitter, and see that he not only runs, but interacts with runners…and isn’t that what we’re all looking for anyway?  A real person, running that company where you put your dollars.  Sometime in May, I downloaded the song.

You know what I’ve been dealing with re: unemployment etc., job hunting…and I forgot to even put my new music into my playlist…so I totally screwed up my computer a few days later on a different note/file/nightmare, and lost everything.  Turns out, by the time I went to add it to my iPod, my iTunes had crashed…and I woke up one morning to nothing in my tunes.  If you’ve read this blog for awhile, you know I’m a FREAK about my music.  Every emotion has a soundtrack, that sort of thing.  If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I had a few harrowing weeks of looking for lost files.

My computer guy on the corner fixed all my music.  This weekend, I was finally able to sync my shuffle with my Running Playlist, that had Hella Sound’s song on it.

My review:  Honestly, when I talked with John awhile ago, I thought I would need the 130 cadence, since I’m HELLA slow.  And old (er).  He had me download the cadence, and surprisingly on a run, I came up at 170.  You may not know what I’m talking about, but you have to go to his site to see this.  He tailors the music TO YOU!  Some days you want to run to Aerosmith, and somedays it’s  It’s not about the song…It’s about the beat.  I was shocked that I got the 170 cadence.  He explained to me that it’s not about how FAST you are.  Actually, because I’m an American, and bigger is better, I thought I was very gifted at 170.  I choose to still believe this.

I ran with it for the first time yesterday.  I listened to random music.  On my first two miles, I was very nauseous, and was ready to stop running…then John’s song came on, and I just let myself run.  It’s one of those songs you can get lost in, and instantly, my nausea went away.  The sun was coming up.  I was HELLA slow, but I stayed with it, rather than in my ADD panic, get a song with words.

You know what?  About 12 minutes in, I was floating.  I was.  We stopped at 4 miles, and I stopped the shuffle.

Today, Kim and I did intervals.  I had 10 minutes left on the song.  It was beautful.  You hardly notice the cadence, but you keep to the beat just the same.  The song is pretty, nice…you hardly notice that you are still running your ass off as you enjoy the music.  I didn’t think I would want just one song for 30 minutes like I did this.  Go there now.  Download.  Get your cadence…and enjoy!

(Like my liberal use of the word HELLA in this post? )

*On a side note, the POM people have contacted me, and want me to review their product on my blog.  They’re sending me yummy drinks, which I will tell you all about…Hey, maybe this can be my new gig!*

this will be one long rambling post, mostly about michael jackson.

I have a problem.  Twitter.  I love the energetic, fresh, engaging format.  However, it’s been taking me away from my first love, blogging. 

I’ve joined the NaBloPoMo…which is like, you gotta blog every day, man.  The topic for July is *Routine*, which I guess is appropriate, since I have not blogged in, oh about a week.   So not like me.  I guess I’m going to have to get back in the routine.  Which led me here today.

First off, I know people have been overwhelmed with too much Michael Jackson.  Not me.  It’s odd.  I didn’t have this weird reaction when he died.  Maybe it’s because the Michael Jackson I loved in the 80s was already dead.  I’m not eloquent, and I’ve read a ton of web/magazine/newspapers, so that I get how everyone feels.  Here’s my take on it.

3 Phases:

MJ-the little kid.  I still cry when I hear Ben & I’ll Be There.  These are songs from when I was a little kid.  Because, he was a little kid.  We are both 50.  I heard those as a kid, and I got this weird stomach/chest flip flop like it almost hurt…You know when you first love someone, or think you do?  That’s what I feel when I hear that.

MJ-The 80s & 90s This is the man.  I remember when MTV first came out, and we all thought it was the Devil.  Seriously.  No one had seen these metal bands with the smoke and craziness…Poison, Foreigner…etc.  My nephew was 2 years old when Billie Jean came out.  I can see me holding him in his little apartment with my sister, and his Dad.  The beat.  It was the 80s.  His Dad was gay and died a horrible AIDS related death, before it was okay to talk about being gay…and I loved him.  I don’t talk about that time much, but it was a shameful time for our country.  People dying.  I held the hand of a friend in the hospital…when we all had to wear gowns, etc…But, my nephew…he was beautiful.  And, we watched that video together.  My little niece…swinging her around in 1991, as we watched Free Willy.  This is the Michael I liked.  This Michael Jackson defined the 80s, and I loved Smooth Criminal in the 90s…newly divorced, and that video was sexy as hell.  Annie, are you alright?

MJ-The Dark, Weird slide into oblivion The tabloids, the trial, the pajamas.  This MJ was unrecognizable.  Really.  He became a Dad.  I judged that…Why, and why now?  I never followed him…the ranch, the chimp, etc.  I was done by then, and I thought he was too.

Most of the Michael Jackson YouTubes are disabled.  I found this one.  Still gives me chills. My first husband and I pulled the car over to hear “We Are The World”, the first time it came on the radio in 1985.  We cried.  It was phenomenal.

Since I spoke here, I’m on Unemployment, trying still to save my house, still running and training for the Nike Women’s Marathon.  Still.  Just got back from Bass Lake…the home of my first drink at age 11.  Both of my boys are at Scout Camp.  One in Northern CA, one in the Eastern Sierras.  I miss them terribly…but they are getting to live their lives.

I’m not going to Hawaii.  I’m thrilled to stay home.  We’ve been going and going and going.

So maybe I’m not making any sense…but I had to get here and attempt a coherent thought that lasts more than 140 characters. 

I spent the day watching the Michael Jackson memorial.  I cried.  Not necessarily because he died…but the 80s.  It was a different time.  We thought we were very attractive.  We all had the same Bon Jovi hair.  When Madonna was a Virgin, and Michael Jackson surprised the world yet again with his amazing talent.

michaeljackson  Rest in Peace Michael…

Thursday Rockin’ Playlist

Sometimes you have really cool, fast music.  Today was a little slower, but I had the BEST run.  New Mizunos may have helped, but here goes for 5.6 miles.  I may not know the title, but this is the order…One more day, then Bass Lake…!  It’s Summer!

It’s A Wonderful Night-Fatboy Slim

Lips Like Sugar-U2

Come to Mama-Lina

Run Run Away-Slade

Sugar Sugar-The Archies

Ursula 1000?

Born To Run-Bruce Springsteen

Mr. Fahrenheit-Queen

Looking Good, Feeling Gorgeous-Rupaul

Wanted Dead or Alive-Bon Jovi

Love Is A Battlefield-Pat Benetar

Streets of Philadelphia-Bruce Springsteen

Not Giving Up-Crash Motive

One Headlight-The Wallflowers

Never Goin’ Back Again-Fleetwood Mac