Originally, this was going to be an epic post was about how Husband and I watched a double feature of Flashdance and Poltergeist on Saturday night.

We have a big muddy pit in our backyard while the renovation happens so maybe Poltergeist wasn’t the best choice ever. I dragged Sean to see it in the theatre a couple of years ago. It’s hokey, but it’s still got some scary moments.

Then I read that Michael Sembello originally wrote this song after watching the movie Maniac. The Flashdance version of the chorus is:

She’s a maniac, maniac on the floor
And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before.

The original chorus is allegedly:

He’s a maniac, maniac that’s for sure,
He will kill your cat and nail him to the door.

That’s so ridiculously silly and awesome I don’t think there’s anything left to say.

Over at Wait wait, don’t blog me, Ian Chillag decided to experiment with the gin and mayo cocktail Tom Robbins mentioned on Wait wait, don’t tell me! this weekend.

There’s more to the post, including the backstory, but I just can’t resist a pull quote to highlight Ian’s conclusion:

Gin & mayonnaise don’t combine well, probably because God doesn’t want them to. So rather than a single disgusting sensation, the gin and mayonnaise battled for the title of Flavor I’d Most Regret Having In My Mouth. I had hoped even the small quantity of alcohol would provide enough impaired judgment to make the experience tolerable, but no.

I also want to point out, for people who don’t pay attention to these kinds of things, the tags for that post:

Tags: ian needs counseling, ian deserves a raise, bad ideas, mayonnaise, gin


We have a number of friends who are ultramarathoners, a sport I find more interesting than triathalons, for reasons I can’t really explain. I think I like the idea of having one task to focus on for 24 hours. (Can you tell I’m already exhausted and overwhelmed this week?)

New York Times columnist Mark Bittman recently went for a run & then had a meal with ultra-runner Scott Jurek.

If last year was a wash, this year he is fit and psyched for the 24-Hour Run world championship in Brive-la-Gaillarde, France, on Thursday and Friday. It is a grueling race to determine how many miles runners can complete on a 1.4-kilometer road loop (about nine-tenths of a mile) in a 24-hour period.

Jurek says he can break the American record, 162 miles, held by Mark Godale. (The world record, 178 miles, and just about every ultramarathoning record from 100 to 1,000 miles, and from 24 hours to 10 days, are, Jurek said, “unassailably” held by Yiannis Kouros of Greece, who no longer competes.)

To win Brive, Jurek said, he must: “Get on it, crank around it, and get it done. It’s all in a day’s work.”

It’s a long day, and one that raises a particular aspect of Jurek’s training that makes him an especially interesting athlete: he is a vegan, consuming no animal products.

I thought it was a nice piece, Bittman talked about Jurek’s diet without passing and judgements or making any outlandish claims about the superiority of one diet over another.

Incidentally, Jurek succeeded in breaking the American record later in the week:

Local runner Scott Jurek finished in second place at the IAU 24 Hour Run World Championship held in Brive, France. Jurek finished with 266.008 km or 165.284 miles in 24 hours. The American record was 162 miles in 24 hours, set by Mark Godale of Ohio in 1999. Jurek passed Godale’s mark with 30 minutes left to run.

First place winner was Shingo Ouene of Japan, completing 273.531 kilometers (169.96 mies) in 24 hours.

That’s seriously cool. Also a little crazy, maybe.

On a minor tangent, let me just say that I have no problem at all with Bittman’s mint juleps “the wrong way”. I’d write more, but I need to go check make sure the bourbon has been restocked….

Husband and I went on our first Real Date on April 15, 1991. That means our 19th anniversary is coming up. I know, crazy! I don’t know when or where we’re going to Officially Celebrate. Maybe we’ll go to the Center for the Use, Overuse and Abuse of Random Capital Letters. Who can say? Actually, I can say, but I’m not saying yet. What I am saying is this: here’s a good cause to support this weekend and you should make time for it on Sunday.

On Sunday, April 11, 2010, Fibre Space is hosting a
speed knitting for charity event

The contest:
Join us for mimosas, juice, fruit and scones at our “pre contest party” and meet your fellow competitors. Enter whether you are a speed stitcher or not! Every single hat made on Sunday will be given to a woman receiving treatment for cancer. Everyone will cast on or begin crocheting these berets, which will be donated to the Washington Cancer Institute to for patients receiving chemo treatment for cancer. The patterns are free and available now, if you would like to practice. The knit pattern is here and the crochet version is here. Because the hats are being donated, please use cotton. We suggest Blue Sky Alpacas dyed cotton or Blue Ridge Yarns pima paints. Prizes will be awarded for the top two finishers in the knit and crochet categories.

The prizes:
Winners will receive a $50 gift certificate for fibre space.™
Second place finishers will be awarded $25 gift certificates.

The registration information and more details are on the website

On a related note: Michelle Whittaker, local knitting maven and all-around swell gal, is training for the Avon 2-day walk to end breast cancer. If you’d like to support her efforts, here’s her Avon fundraising page:

On a personal note…
While the focus of this walk is on breast cancer, other types of cancer have touched my life. My mother lost her battle with ovarian cancer in July 2005, and I miss her everyday. I know that she would be proud of me for taking on such challenge.

I also walk in honor of my friend Siobhan Hanson who courageously fought ovarian cancer but lost her struggle on March 6, 2010 and my friend’s father who lost his battle with cancer last summer.

For all those unnamed people who have been affected cancer, I walk for you.

If you can’t make it to the knit-in, you can make a pledge to Michelle or you can make hats to donate if you’re so moved. Send them here:

Washington Cancer Institute
c/o Lorna Delancy, Patient Resource Center
Washington Hospital Center
110 Irving St, NW
Washington, DC 20010

If you decide to knit hats for any charity group, be sure to strictly follow their guidelines carefully. They don’t generally make rules capriciously about the types of fibers allowed – there are good reasons. Not following the guidelines wastes your time and theirs so always doublecheck when you have questions.

You can get more information and inspiration at ChemoCaps or headhuggers, which are the two websites I see referred to most often.

Did I mention Danielle will be mixing mimosas on Sunday? I’m already the world’s slowest knitter so that’s probably not the Best Idea Ever if I want to get any knitting done, but it’ll sure make me an enthusiastic cheerleader. Until I curl up in the dogbed under the register and go to sleep, that is. (Please don’t let Veronica draw on me with a sharpie).