Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Call me. I've Got Nothin Better To Do...

Apparently, people are now taking their cellphones to the grave.

This is all my mom needs to hear. Knowing her, she'd still call me every day.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

R.I.P. Arrested Development

It's so sad. I knew the day would come but yet I still fantasized about adding Showtime to my DirecTV lineup just so we could continue to tune-in.

But today's news shattered that fantasy, and the Bluths, in all likelihood, are no more.

Please observe a moment of silence before proceeding to the musical tribute.


Thomas Dolby has a new blog worth checking out. After 15 years he's about to embark on a U.S. tour and is coming to Seattle on April 22 and I'm psyched! I caught him during the Aliens Ate My Buick tour at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles and he put on an amazing show.

I enjoyed reading his "Shed Life" entry, especially since I work out of a closet. It's nice to read about fellow writers' workspaces. Even doubly-so when it's a musical genius!

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Stuck somewhere in between

I'm happy to report that I've been able to eat one whole banana today. That's progress. Given the sad state I was in the last few days, well, a banana is a feast for me right now. This is a really yucky way to lose weight, but I'm down, like, 3 pounds.

So I skipped my 12-mile run today and I actually feel okay about it, considering that I find I feel better if I just stay in bed. I found some pretty decent advice on how if you're feeling bad from the neck up, you should run; but if you're feeling bad from the neck down, it's a virus (which I'm sure it is) and running will only cause further dehydration. So, no run today; but hubby helped me to realize my body's not going to lose this conditioning I've spent the last 12 weeks working on and rather than run the risk of staying sick longer, or getting worse, I'm to just stay put.

I'm also happy to report that I found a place to stay on Whidbey Island next weekend, so at least I can sleep in until 5 on Sunday morning, instead of getting up at 3 a.m. like I thought I had to in order to get to the race on time! I can't tell you how relieved I am about that. Plus, as an added bonus, Pa, Na and Moofie are coming with me! I think Pa should hand Moofie to me at the 16 mile mark so we can finish together since she's been such an awesome "training buddy". Hmmmm...maybe I can persuade him!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Pretty awful the second time around

So after I posted about my yummy meal, I spent the entire evening, last night, puking it all up--and then some--and now I'm lying in bed, where I've been all day, with my head feeling like I drank an entire party's worth of liquor. My fever has gone down, but the only thing I can keep in my stomach, at this point, is water.

My only two thoughts are: where the fuck did I get this? And how the hell am I supposed to run tomorrow?

Beats me. I know one thing's for certain: I won't be eating another Banzai Burger anytime soon.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Random Crap

Oi, I'm a stuffed little piggy right now. Pa, Na and I went to Red Robin where I downed half a choco shake, a Banzai Burger (my fave) and fries. Sigh. I don't want to get too used to eating this much stuff because after April 2, I won't be running 100 miles a month like I am now!

Which brings me to my next subject: Ouch! I'm a sore little simian, just slightly over a week before the big race. I'm tapering now, with just a 12-miler (just...that's a bit of an understatement) on Saturday and a few random shorter runs before next Sunday. I usually take yoga classes on Friday to stretch everything out and so I'm really looking forward to tomorrow.

Which reminds me--if you have a dog, you HAVE to test this theory for me, ok? Every time I go into downward dog to stretch (get your mind out of the gutter) here in the house, Moofie does it too. So I wonder--is it just her or is this a common thing among dogs and their owners?

I'm excited, I'm nervous and I'm confident, in addition to being sore. I'm already looking at other races for next year (the LA Marathon's looking pretty cool!) But, as usual, I'm getting way ahead of myself. I need to finish this one first. I keep going back and forth, too. On the one hand, EVERYBODY says that your goal for the first marathon is just to finish. But then...I read Oprah's time was 4:29. Yeah, yeah--she had Bob Greene to train her, but I still feel compelled to at least try and beat Oprah's time!

Let's see, what else? Well, I'm still tinkering away on Chapter 13 of my manuscript. I got a little frustrated this week while doing research and coming across an account that was conflicting with other reports. I mean, I know everybody had different experiences, but I guess I'm trying too hard not to lean one way or the other.

Anyway, I've been previewing Morrissey's new album on My Space and it rocks! I'm looking forward to the release in April.

I asked Pa to make me a super "Monkey Marathon MP3 Mix" for my race. He laughed and said it would be good practice for when he has to make a mix for my funeral (he just can't wait to play "Monkey Gone to Heaven" by the Pixies). So I'm really looking forward to his mix because I know it's going to crack me up during the race. So long as it doesn't make me have to pee!

I didn't mention this before, but last week, Mary and I tried to register for the Danskin Triathlon here in Seattle and it was already closed! We were so pissed since they had just opened registration during the first week of March--so we waited too long (less than two weeks??!?!?) Instead, though, Mary's coming out in July to do the SEAFAIR Triathlon with me. It's basically the same set up--in Seward Park--just a month earlier. So I'll have a week off after this race and then I need to start swimming and biking.

So, um, that's me I guess. I'm gonna go put on my fat pants now and see what's on my TiVo!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Happy Spring!

In honor of the season change, I gave my blog a new makeover. You like? Yeah well don't say anything if you don't. Ok, tell me if you don't and I'll just pretend I don't care. I used my two favorite colors: pink and brown, which Pa calls the Baskin-Robbins color palette. Makes sense since I'm an ice cream junkie.

Anyway, maybe this'll get me bloggin more. Hopefully. We'll see.

Monday, March 20, 2006

It's just a list. Really.

The good news is someone in the PaNaMa household is getting published.
Through McSweeney's.
An actual book.

The bad news is, it's not me.

I'm happy for my over-extended, coffee-achieving, sickeningly-funny, and wickedly-smart husband.

And I have only myself to blame for not trying hard enough to get myself in (real) print. I often think if I could just harness the same energy I have to train for a marathon or a triathlon into submitting pieces to editors, I'd make some headway. But I'm lacking fire in my belly and I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because I want to stay focused on my manuscript and not bother with other pieces that would become more distracting. Or maybe it's that paralyzing fear that I just don't have what it takes.

I won't know, though, unless I try.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Thursday, March 09, 2006

My New (Old) Toy

Just got it the other day...
(and no, I'm not talking about the guy in the pic or the Sock Puppet).

Isn't it dreamy? I had this phone in 1981 and it cracked and broke in 1984, so I'm reliving my teenage years.

I'm so giddy, every time it rings I wanna pick up the phone and cover the mouthpiece and shout, "I'M ON THE PHONE, MOM!!!

From the Mouth of Na

PRESCHOOL TEACHER: That's a nice sweatshirt you're wearing. It says "Michigan" on it.
Are you from Michigan?

MR. NA: No.

PRESCHOOL TEACHER: Oh. Where are you from?

Mr. NA: I come from where babies are picked and my Mama and Papa picked me out.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Post Oscar Rants

It was a sad, sad state of affairs last night at the Oscars and once again, I'm thankful for my TiVo which enabled me and Pa to cruise through 75% it at high speed. It's too bad, too, because I was looking forward to seeing Jon Stewart (who is revered like a god in this household) as the host, but even his one liners and little quips were cautiously delivered and painfully bland. The only time I laughed was when he announced they had run out of clips for the montage "saluting montages".

Forget, for a moment, that Crash won best motion picture; forget that Lauren Bacall needed a larger font size in the teleprompter during her presention; or that Ben Stiller, once again, proved that he's really not at all funny. Just who the hell was Joaquin Phoenix telling he loved? Maybe it's none of my business, but if you're going to mouth the words straight into the camera for me and tens of millions of others to see, I think we have a right to know.

And while I find Charlize Theron adorable, I couldn't help but be reminded of the awful little head that sprouted on Richard E. Grant's shoulder in How to Get a Head in Advertising when I saw that---that--thing on her dress. I thought it might just tell Jon Stewart to get the hell off the stage or blow a poison dart right through Jennifer Garner's voluptuous postpartum breasts, though she might have done extensive damage to herself with the razor sharp heels she wore if she had actually fallen after she tripped.

Yeah, you can say I'm truly disappointed in this year's ceremony--with the winners, the losers and the one-liners. Perhaps next year the powers that be can enlist Trey Parker and Matt Stone as the show's emcees. At least then it'd be anything but boring.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

If I'm a Zen Mom, Where the hell is my enlightenment?

Are You a Slacker Mom

Your quiz results make you a Zen Mom

How do you do it? Even when explosions are all around, you are able to take a deep cleansing breath and chant your mantra "this too shall pass." You are a calming influence on your kids in a hectic world.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Summer Nights concerts canceled for 2006

From the Seattle Times:

Seattle has lost a showcase summer attraction — at least for this year — as promoter One Reel on Tuesday canceled its annual outdoor concert series for 2006, delighting those who had sued to keep the shows out of Gas Works Park.

One Reel sold more than 50,000 tickets to last year's Summer Nights, 17 concerts from June to September on the shores of South Lake Union that featured acts such as Lyle Lovett, B.B. King, Chris Isaak, Clint Black and Aimee Mann.

When the city's Department of Parks and Recreation announced in December that it had agreed to let One Reel move the series to Gas Works, the joys of listening to live music under starry skies quickly gave way to a racket over neighborhood tranquility and park access.

That battle landed in King County Superior Court last week. The lawsuit, faulting the city and One Reel for not formally evaluating the impacts of the move, was one of several factors that led One Reel to decide to cancel the series for this summer and instead point toward 2007, said Sheila Hughes, chief operating officer.

The move to Gas Works would have been the second in three years for the concert series that began 15 years ago.

"We simply ran out of time," Hughes said.

"It's a complicated series of things that have to come together in order for us to produce an event like Summer Nights. The timelines for all of those different pieces had become so compressed that we felt like we didn't have the ability to pull it off beautifully this year."

One Reel, a nonprofit that also produces Bumbershoot, already had lined up some undisclosed performers for this year's Summer Nights who now will either skip Seattle or seek out an alternative venue. One Reel needed to start selling tickets in April, but felt that would be a stretch for this year.

"We just haven't been able to move as swiftly into marketing, promotion and launch because we've been working so hard on the other pieces of this," Hughes said.

One Reel and the city were negotiating with the Wallingford Community Council over the configuration of the venue at the park, as well as how to manage parking, traffic and noise on show nights. The capacity for each concert would have been 3,800 ticket holders, although opponents of the move expected countless others would converge upon the park to listen for free.

Cheryl Trivison, founder of the Friends of Gas Works Park advocacy group that took the city and One Reel to court, said she is convinced the lawsuit prompted the cancellation. She said the group could keep its lawsuit active in order to prevent the series from ever moving to Gas Works.

"As far as I'm concerned, the concerts are gone from Gas Works for good," said Trivison, whose husband, Richard Haag, designed Gas Works three decades ago.

"One Reel's idea that it can fence off a 2 ½-acre section of the park, put up bleachers, a stage and 31 Porta Potties that would stay up from May to September to accommodate the concerts, that's just not going to happen now or ever."

But Mayor Greg Nickels and Parks Superintendent Ken Bounds both believe Gas Works is the appropriate location for the concerts and want the series to restart there in 2007.

"The mayor is very disappointed that One Reel was put in the position of having to cancel this year's series," spokesman Marty McOmber said.

"Being able to put on a waterfront concert series with amazing views of the skyline is something special in this city and it's unfortunate that's not going to happen this summer. It's a safe bet a lot of music lovers in this city feel the same way."

For many, Summer Nights concerts have become popular "date nights," with the romantic waterfront setting and high-end ticket prices a sure-fire way to impress.

The series began in 1991 on Seattle's central waterfront. Because Pier 62/63 needs repair, it moved to South Lake Union in 2005. The concerts needed to move again for 2006 because of park construction.

Much of the consternation over the move to Gas Works stems from the way it was disclosed — at a hastily called meeting with Friends of Gas Works and three neighborhood groups, three days before Christmas and Hanukkah.

Parks Superintendent Bounds told residents of Wallingford, Fremont and Eastlake that night that the concerts were moving to Gas Works, and that the city and One Reel would spend the next several months addressing any negative effects on the neighborhoods.

Although private discussions about the possibility of moving the series to Gas Works began in August, Bounds emphasized again on Tuesday that the neighborhoods were informed of the decision soon after he made it.

"We didn't have enough time to conduct a public process that the community would have considered to be adequate," he said. "But no matter what the process is, there are still people who are not going to be satisfied because they don't want the concerts to happen at Gas Works."

Bounds said if the concerts are to take place in a Seattle park in 2007, they will be at Gas Works. He said the decision to cancel this year's series buys the city and One Reel a year to negotiate a plan that addresses concerns of the Wallingford Community Council.

The neighborhood group opted not to be a plaintiff in the lawsuit because it was in talks with the city and One Reel about ways to resolve parking, traffic and noise issues.

Bob Quinn, the community council's spokesman, said the group could end up supporting Summer Nights at Gas Works if those negotiations go well.

The neighborhood council might have supported the shows this summer had the city and One Reel brought Wallingford into negotiations sooner, he said.

"We are not against the concerts," Quinn said. "We are against the process used to site these concerts at Gas Works Park. We think this hiatus of one year is appropriate as it will allow the appropriate process to take place."

The City Council last month approved the move to Gas Works, voting to release $150,000 for park improvements to support the shows. The council limited the run at Gas Works to three years.

After 2008, officials would consider a permanent venue, although the new South Lake Union Park would be off the table because the council has promised supporters trying to raise private money that the park is not being built to host events of that size.

One Reel and city officials have said that ideally, they would like the series to one day return to the central waterfront. But such a move would be tied up in the schedule for reconstructing the seawall and the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

Anywhere from 17 to 23 concerts would have been scheduled for Gas Works this summer, with ticket prices ranging from $20 to $55, Hughes said.

One Reel, which started in 1971 as a traveling vaudeville show, has grown into one of the Seattle area's largest nonprofits, with a full-time office staff of about 45 employees and an annual budget of more than $20 million.

One Reel, which is cutting back this summer's Bumbershoot from four to three days because of traditionally low attendance on the Friday of Labor Day weekend, also produces the annual Fourth of July fireworks show on Lake Union and Teatro ZinZanni, a dinner show.

Several other outdoor concert venues in the area could pick up the slack left by Summer Nights, including Marymoor Park in Redmond, the Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery in Woodinville and Woodland Park Zoo.

While recognizing the other venues, Hughes of One Reel said "there really is no other event in Seattle that combines world-class music with world-class views and ambience. Hopefully, by us taking a year off, people can remember what's so great about Summer Nights and get excited all over again when it eventually returns in 2007."

I, for one, am very glad Reel One canceled. It's hard enough to endure the throngs of people who come to the fireworks display every 4th of July. They park and double park on our street, dump their empty beverage containers in our bushes, and crank up the music in their cars after the event since they're stuck in traffic on my street for hours on end. With up to 3,800 ticketholders per show, plus any additional looky-loos, I couldn't imagine having to endure this 25 times over the summer--26 if you count the fireworks show. Gas Works Park is not a good choice for a concert venue. It'd be extremely disruptive to the community. And so, when this comes up for planning in 2007, I'll be there to vote it down.