Why The Face? – Trains

I’m fortunate to have showers at work so I can run during my lunch break.  There’s a route through nearby neighborhoods that take me over train tracks right at the end.  As I was finishing up I saw a train coming.  Not one to risk death to save 3 minutes, I decided to let it pass rather than jump the tracks.  Smart, right?  BUZZ.  Just after the engine passed me I heard it downshift and start braking.  A minute later, it was stopped.  I saw 4 options:

  1. Run to the front of the train and go around the engine.
  2. Run to the back of the train and go around the last car.
  3. Wait.
  4. Go over / through the train.
I stood there for a good 5 minutes debating:
  1. What if the train starts going while I’m running towards the front?  Longer wait.  No.
  2. How long is this thing?  Is there even anywhere to run alongside it?  No.
  3. No.
  4. Obviously yes.
In true Wesley Snipes fashion, I tossed my water bottle through the train, hoisted myself up onto a train car, and shimmied through to the other side.  I hopped off and wrapped up my run.  No big deal.  But seriously?

WTF!  Stupid trains.

Coffee: In Dependence

It doesn’t take much for me to make rash decisions. Example? I read a local Austin blogger’s post about effects of coffee — more specifically, caffeine –and right then and there decided to remove coffee from my daily routine. That’s right, I’ve undertaken a challenge I once thought to be so far out of reach, well it’s like thinking about qualifying for the Boston Marathon… hmm… So I’m giving it a try!

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Gluten Free Update #2

Now that I’m a little over a month of eating gluten free I thought it would be a good time to provide another update. Since my last post on the topic I’ve had a few lapses. On the one hand, it’s a bummer. I’ve been avoiding gluten as much as possible, so any slip up is a blow to my confidence in sticking to my goal. However, I have a great excuse: social pressure. Let me explain.

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Update: Sadly Lembas is permanently closed.

With my recent switch to gluten free eating, I’ve become much more aware of how pervasive the g-word is.  Well just two days after making the jump, a new trailer hit the pavement with a menu free of grains and gluten!  Fear not, it’s not just serving celery with a side of beef.  No, the menu makes eating gluten free feel more like just eating. I submit to you my trilogy of visits to the one trailer to rule them all, Lembas.

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Get Ready to Relay


This weekend –yes, the whole weekend– is the Texas Independence Relay. Eleven of us will be driving from Austin to Bastrop to begin our journey. We’ll traverse the badlands of Texas on two legs from Bastrop to Houston along local roads for a total of 201 miles. The route is broken up into 40 legs, divided among the team. When we’re not running, we’ll be in one of the two team vans. I’ll be in van #2 with four others cheering runners, eating, and notably not showering. Our team gets things started at 1:30pm on Saturday March 31st.

In terms of actual running, I’ll be tackling three

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of the more difficult sections. If all remains as planned, my first run is 6.09 miles starting at 7:30pm Saturday. Next will be 6.6 miles, starting at 2:30am Sunday. … … … And my third run is 6.7 miles at 9:20am Sunday. The actual starting time for each depends on how everyone else has been doing. Barring any mishaps, the team should be crossing the finish line around 2:15pm on Sunday April 1st (27 hours after the start).

It’s going to be a lot of fun and I’ll try to give some live updates as well as the obvious post-run “race” report. Keep an eye out for Team Austinia (#292)!

Why The Face? – Sheltered

This past weekend a froworker had some in-law relatives

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in town from Chicago. As the resident food person on the team, I sent him a list of must-eat restaurants to take visitors. I chose places that would give a well-rounded picture of what Austin has to offer. I was given real-time updates where they decided to dine:

McDonalds. Buffalo Wild Wings. Cheddars. McDonalds. Chick Fil A. McDonalds.

WTF! Enjoy the pink slime.


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