Tuesday, September 28, 2010

More Books

Paula: Paula Radcliffe's autobiography cowritten with David Walsh - amazing read so far
IWoz: Steve Woz's biography

Late Update: The books were Rohit's and are generous donations :)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Blog Bandh before Boston

This one is perhaps among the last few posts I will make on my blog for the next 6-7 months.

There will be 6 other posts - 1 for Bombay, 1 for Bangalore Ultra, 1 for my annual fund raising request for Parivaar and 3 book reviews which are in the pipeline.

As I have said in an earlier post, I am planning to leave for the US in Jan to prepare to qualify for Boston.

I am also trying to write a book. So I have taken the advice of someone who is mentoring me and will keep my expression limited to writing off my blog. So help me God.

Today appropriately enough, I ran 6 miles in 46:09, my fastest yet in recent memory, eclipsing 46:12 I ran last Sat and the 46:30 this week.

Minor victory was 3 miles in 22:09, 6 seconds faster than my best ever 5K.

Pray for me...

NB 740

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Books from Flipkart

In a curious connect, bought 2 books from flipkart

Stop me if you have heard this (A History and Philosophy of Jokes) by Jim Holt
The Groaning Bookshelf and other stories by Pradeep Sebastian

The author of the latter had reviewed the former here

And I really liked it enough to buy it. Feel like a book snob now considering that the former has only about 125 pages and some of those are pics, but costs almost Rs.550!

But funny...

Another book I ordered also from flipkart, The Lore of Running is somewhere in the mail!
Update: The Lore of Running is here :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Acche Shakun...

aka Good Omens...

On a day when Mission Boston revived, I clocked 46:30 for 6 miles, my 2nd run below 47 min in less than a week...

I think it is the excitement of the approaching menace ;)

On On, as the Hashers like to say.

Ran with my 1st ever pair of Adidas Supernova which were completely uncomfortable to get into but otherwise worked fine. They definitely can't be used for a full since they seem very narrow, but they seem to work just fine for short distances

Mission Boston - the revival

This post is to announce the revival of my attempts to try and qualify for Boston.
So dedications & thanks to Santosh (who first suggested the coach), Arun (who found Anil) and Anil (who found the coach) and the coach (who has already given tremendous inputs) on my planned trip to the US in early Jan to take on Boston.

Starting Jan 2011 after the annual Bombay attempt, I aim to train seriously for Boston. I expect to be in the US (Mostly SFO and perhaps Hawaii) for about 12 weeks till Apr 2011.

More soon.

Funds to sponsor my trip are welcome.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Making Ideas Happen

Read here

Sunday Run, other stories

21.5 to 22 km in 1:59:22*
Ran negative splits :)

Ran the reverse leg in about 57-58 min largely due to a bout of reckless running (which continued till I reached the HSBC ATM on Pedder Road) after I saw AA around Babulnath when I was just hitting the seaface on Marine Drive.

Had reached the sea-face in about 1:01, slower than usual, mostly due to a 1 km stretch after exiting Worli Sea Face when I chilled out till I hit Haji Ali.

Slightly disappointing Sunday otherwise though since my team didn't even make the finals of the regional finals of TATA Crucible.

However, the day has ended on an awesome note since my 'adopted' cousin to whom I gave tips to, finished in 4:19 at KTM. And I had predicted her time within a 10 min range.

Further, divine intervention happened on the most depressing chore of the weekend, of doing my laundry - mysteriously some clothes were cleaner than I thought, not sure how much leaving them soaked for over 24 hours had to do with...

So all's well that ends well, especially since I finally finished the Bryson

* Haven't quite sorted out whether it is 21.4 or 22 or more!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Waltzing Matunga (Road...)*

‎46:12 for 6 miles this morn...It is the fastest I have run in recent memory and unlike most fast runs, I started steady...
1st lap of 1.2 km in 5:45#
and then I tried to maintain the deficit of 15 secs per lap

But the 7th lap completed in 5:30 or so set me up for a finish.

Actually at the end of 7th lap, I had taken 40:16 or so.
So when I started my 8th loop, all I had to do was hold an 8 min mile pace which I thankfully did.

I am taking some sensible advice from some generous souls in the US, who are awesome runners about a planned sabbatical for Boston. Right now, it looks like I may put it off for another year while I build some serious time.

For all the excitement about today's time, a 3:10 for Boston means I need to be able to do a 40 min 10K (I know you can do a 42 min 10K too, but you can't hold a 10K pace for a full marathon,atleast I can't)

So wish me luck to take off from work soon...

All my buddies running KTM, God Speed...

#that is not really so fast when you know that it usually degrades
* Matunga Road is the closest railway station to my humble home in Bombay

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Ganesha Chaturthi, Id weekend mileage...

Ran 15 km on Sat, some of it with the generous Jugy who ran about 8.4 km with me.
Ran 29.7 km on Sun in the company of some lovely friends from the Red Dragon gang...Upon some persuasion, ran all the way from home to Cubbon park starting at 5:25 am. Felt like I was getting up for an early flight, except I was the only one flying. All dogs on the way gave me a sympathetic look... Not one barked at me, let alone chase me.

Am happy I didn't run any kms in the week since I was so fresh. In fact I feel like I can run another 10K atleast. This is the kind of fuel in the tank we need on Nov 14th (actually we need 2 such tanks on Nov 14th) and on Jan 16th.

Of course, free breakfast from the evergreen and getting younger Commander...Unbelievably after a loaded dosa and dip-idlis and a coffee to top my morning consitutional, ... I am now hungry! (It's not even 2 hrs since I ate all that)...

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

And the book buying continues

Landmark finally found Solar by Ian McEwan and I gratefully lapped it up but not before groaning at the condition of the new book...

Also bought Lonely Planet India's latest edition which has 99 reasons to travel as its cover story.

Wanted to buy Pradeep Sebastian's The Groaning Bookshelf... but the copy is still not available at Landmark.

Got some career advice from a celebrity author (Woo hoo!) in the process while lamenting the fact that large bookshops are not usually my favoured destination.

And yes, not a penny was spent since all of this came by virtue of credit card points...

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Parents

Surreal Moment for the day...
Usually I call back most people who call on my phone. So when I get missed calls, I call back out of what I think is good manners. So I sound formal and all.
Y'day I had 2 missed calls from someone. So I call back and began my standard pitch, 'Hi, this is D. I have 2 missed calls on my phone from this no. Who is this please?"
"Hey ..., this is amma! Your appa has got a new SIM card for himself. So he is testing it by calling people." (my mom's message is translated)

While I got super-pissed for a moment, I am still laughing at myself and the silliness of it all.

Sometimes parents bring in humour into your lives without planning to.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Living the Dream

This weekend, I finally got to wear the jersey of the Albiceleste and play football - a lifelong dream. Pic as soon as I get it.

A frantic message and several calls from colleagues woke me up from some really comfortable sleep, as I had planned to take it easy and run later in the day, mostly due to some weird ankle pain. That was not to be. We got as far as the semis of an intra-office tournament.

Ended up not running at all on Sat.

Ran 21 km in 2:02:40. Not bad. Not very good either. But am still a little sore due to the football y'day.

NB 740

Friday, September 03, 2010

Bangalore - Labour of Love

...is what I had originally titled my review of the book. But Remembrance of things past is fine too.

Read it here

Landmark Loot 2010 - Part IV

Leela - a patchwork life (Leela Naidu's bio) by Jerry Pinto
The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk
Ghost Train to the Eastern Star by Paul Theroux
The Pregnant King by Devdutt Pattanaik
Angelology by Danielle Trussoni
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Eraly
Time Out Mumbai - 6th anniversary issue

were all picked up in one desperate sortie at the Landmark sale to use up my coupons. Now I can rest for a while. Ok, maybe I should read a few of the books also ;)

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Dhammoody Blues

I am 32 and feeling homesick in a city of over 16 million people.
I miss my garden city.
I miss my friends most of whom are in the US (but then why miss the garden city*)
I miss being able to just sit and read a book in my porch with no regard for the next day.
I am like the patron saint of unrequited love.
I am moody till I begin to run.
When I run, I can kick your butt.**
I am the king of the world.
I run therefore I am.



* don't get all analytical alright? I am all emotional here
** Atleast you will sweat or maybe even bleed trying to beat me. Yeah, Yeah, Pre said something like it. He's my running guru.

Saint Ralph

St. Jude (patron saint of lost causes)
St. Bruno (patron saint against possession)
St. Anthony the Abbot (patron saint of gravediggers)
St. Thomas Aquinas (the patron saint of apologists)
Saint Catherine of Siena (patron saint of fire prevention)
.
.
.
1 for each month of training for Ralph, a 14 year old who thinks his winning the Boston Marathon will be the miracle needed to make his mother awaken from her coma.
Specially endearing if you want to run Boston some day.

Directed by Michael McGowan, winner of the 1995 Detroit Marathon as well as the 1995 Round the Bay Race (apparently North America's oldest race, predating even Boston by 3 years)*, the movie is a charming tale of an ordinary kid with extraordinary persistence.

Nice quote from the movie here:

"If we're not chasing after miracles, what's the point, huh?"

And of course, the awesome rendition of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah by Gord Downie (don't see the youtube video, since it has the ending of the movie)...

...
I did my best, it wasn't much
I couldn't feel, so I tried to touch
I've told the truth, I didn't come to fool you
And even though
It all went wrong
I'll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah
...

Excellent viewing for a holiday especially in my current mood

* HT to IMDB

Govinda a la re run

But I am anything but happy with the people. One truck full of abusive kids hurling m* and other profanities at passers-by around Shivaji Park, other trucks full of more such people blocking the road, making running next to impossible...

However, I did run - 6 miles in 48:05
1st lap of 1.2 km in 5:03 (you read that right!)

The plan was to break 47:28 but the trucks wouldn't let me. The constant getting on, getting off footpath and several stoppages to let people and even some dogs pass on footpath, etc cut atleast 15-20 seconds of my time.

NB 740.

Still I tried. I was in 42:07 until the penultimate lap and thought I will break it. But side stitches had other ideas. Another day, I will break it...

Thanks to Saint Ralph for the inspiration (see the next post)

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Landmark Loot 2010 - Part III

The good man VJ continues his saintly deeds by buying us The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet by David Mitchell (which seems a promising read from my reading of the 1st chapter)...

VJ has been rewarded with a filter coffee :)

And our coupons have finally dwindled :( Just have enough to last another sortie to Landmark...