Friday, December 30, 2011

Top 10 Albums of 2011

10. Janes Addiction, The Great Escape Artist

This one probably didn't make too many 10 top lists but I don't care. There are three bands that will likely always make my list, regardless of their material. They are Linkin Park (!), Smashing Pumpkins and Janes Addiction. Plus, this album is actually pretty darn good. The first four songs are terrific and then it drops a bit but it still gets heavy rotation, especially when I'm running.

9. Black Keys, El Camino

Though certainly not a new band, I'm kind of just getting turned on to these guys. I saw them live at Outside Lands in San Francisco this Summer and they blew me away. Plus, this album is co-produced by Danger Mouse. I don't know how that dude does it, but virtually everything he produces blows me away. I think with a few more listens this one would move up even higher on my list.

8. The Weeknd, Thursday

I don't know who this dude is and I don't know why he gives away all his music as free downloads (go to his website; easy enough to find via Google) but boy does he create some fantastic music. He just released another mix tape last week, Echoes of Silence, and though I've only listened to it a few times it seems equally as good as his previous works. Dude is pretty prolific, too.

7. Keep Shelly in Athens, in Love with Dusk

This genre is described as "downtempo." I'd describe it as ethereal. I usually don't like ethereal, but this just has a great beat. It's one of those albums you keep on your phone/iPod and don't think much about until a song comes on and you think to yourself, holy crap, that's great, who IS this? And when that occurs time and again ... well, it makes your list at number seven.

6. Phantogram, Nightlife.

This is a band that I am growing to love. I saw them this Fall at the Portland Music Festival (look at me, getting out to see all this music this year!) and they too blew me away. The singer just might be the hottest woman I have ever laid eyes on and they absolutely rock. As good as this album is - and I really do like it quite a bit - it isn't quite as good as their previous one, Eyelid Movies, which I think might be a classic (for me at least).

5. My Morning Jacket, Circuital

I saw these guys too just a few weeks ago (detect a trend here?) with my boy Nick and they were fantastic. I've long admired Jim James and dig the whole southern fried rock thing. I'm not nearly as knowledgeable as Nick about their catalogue, but I think Circuital might be my favorite MMJ album.

4. Coldplay, Mylo Xyloto

Part of me is embarrassed to have this album on my top ten list, let alone at number four, but screw it; it's terrific and ridiculously listenable. Yes, these guys are a bit over the top and their formula is a little TOO dialed in, but damn if they don't create excellent pop music.

3. Girls, Father, Son, Holy Ghost

These San Francisco dudes are awesome. I didn't fully love their first album, though it did grown me over time, but this one resonated from the beginning. I suspect the more I listen to this one, the more I will regret not putting it in the one position. It's that good. This is a band that excites me because as good as they are, I suspect they haven't yet tapped their full potential.

2. The Beastie Boys, Hot Sauce Committee

The Beasties are BACK. How could my three Jewish boys from Queens not make my list? Truth be told, this is far from my favorite Beasties album, but it doesn't matter; this is the Beasties we are talking about. Is there any other band out there that's nearly as fun?

1. Jay Z and Kanye West, Watch the Throne

"You are now watching the throne. Don't let me get in my zone. Don't let me get in my zone." Each year I have a clear cut favorite and this year was no different. This is the one. I'll be listening to it years from now. Though I am a big Jay fan, I think Kanye actually carries this one. No matter - this is a classic. It was massively overhyped and in typical Jay Z and Kanye fashion, somehow managed to exceed expectations.

And there you have it. I'll conclude with my favorite song of the year, which is Midnight City by M83 and the worst album of the year; the Metallica/Lou Reed collaboration. Holy unlistenable, Batman. I wanted so bad to like this, but it's simply dreadful in every respect.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


I know - I've gotten hurt pretty severely at CrossFit. I suspect it might not even be the last injury I get there either; my form and flexibility are both terrible, which is a recipe for disaster.

But that being said, it might arguably be the most addictive thing I've ever done in my endurance career and that includes a seven year addiction to triathlon.

For the sake of brevity, I'll distill it down to the three point which matter most to me:

- variety. It's rare that you do the same workout twice. I love going to class not knowing what the hour will bring. Some days it is a strength workout; others, more cardio. One thing they have in common: they will make you work.

- strength. I've never been strong. Sure, I can run, swim and long ago, bike for long periods of time, but that's all cardio. My limiting factor has been strength. In just three months, CrossFit is starting to change that. Granted, I'll never be mistaken for a 70's era Arnold, but I've noticed a big difference in the first 90 days and I think it will translate to making me a stronger runner (if and when my hip ever heals).

- time. The class I've been going to most is 5:45 am. I'm home, having coffee before the family is awake and I'm done with my workout for the day and haven't interfered with work/family. Something to be said about that.

Anyway, I don't man to be a walking billboard for CrossFit; there are some things I'm not crazy about which I will save for another post (because I am dashing off .. to CrossFit). But the reason why I wrote on this subject is that I know this is the time of the year when people are considering their goals for the upcoming year. If you are intent on improving your health/fitness, I strongly urge you to at least give CrossFit consideration. I promise you will see results - quickly.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Vacation Books

Read two great books while on vacation. The first was Turn Right at Machu Piccu. What a great read; it was a travelogue in which the author re-created in its entirety Hiram Bingham's journey to discovering Machu Piccu in 1911. It was an excellent and entertaining read. MP has long been on my list of places to visit and this book helped seal the deal. Only thing is if/when i go, I'm only doing the four day hike in. No chance of taking the train. Not sure if my kids are up for a four day hike so it might be a few years. Anyone out there care to join us?

The other book chronicled Joe DiMaggio's 56 game hitting streak, and what that streak meant to the nation as it prepared to enter World War II. It too was a great read and truly captured a bygone era. Of all the records in sports, I think that's the one that will never be touched.

Also put a good end in the Steve Jobs book. That one is proving slower going than anticipated; probably because I'm familiar with most aspects of that story.

Anyway, I'm on the market for something new. Any other recommendations out there?

Monday, December 26, 2011

New York Jets and Coach Ryan

I'm not as passionate about the NFL as I am about college football. There's only so much time one can devote to football on a weekend. But my NFL team is and always has been the New York Jets.

Like other Jets fans, I was initially charmed by Coach Ryan. I thought he was indeed just what that team needed; fiery, controversial, unafraid and funny. The team seemed to respond in kind too, going to the AFC championship game the past two years.

But this year, the team has stepped backwards and in the process, how act is starting to wear very thin. Virtually every move he made building up to this past weekend's game with the Giants backfired in a big way. To me, covering up the Giants super bowl trophies was the last straw in bombast and stupidity. I come from the Michigan school of coaching and Coach Ryan's way is the antithesis of the Michigan way.

For me it comes down to this. He is starting to do to me what Isaiah Thomas did for the Knicks; turn me off from them completely for years, to the point where I was rooting against them simply so he would get fired.  I suspect my sentiment might be true for others out there as well.

Still time to reverse course a bit Coach Ryan. Let's see how smart you really are.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Sorry so quiet; we just got back last night from a week long visit to Club Med, Cancun with our homies the Berlents.

The recap: we ate, swam, hung out, ate, hung out, ran, hung out, ate, drank tequila. Lots of tequila (Todd and I anyway). Rinse and repeat for seven days.

A great time was had; we are enormously lucky in that the parents and kids all get along beyond famously.  Makes for an enjoyable time. Pictures to follow soon.

Thursday, December 15, 2011


One of my personal goals for 2011 was to read at least 12 books (mission easily accomplished) during the year and to participate in 12 races. If I didn't injure myself (update: the leg is a tad infected and didn't respond to an antibiotic salve, so now I am on oral antibiotics. It looks like it's getting better though) I'd be there - I am one race short. I'm hopeful that before the end of the year I can squeeze in a 5k or maybe even a trail 20k, if the leg is up to it. To date this year I have run:

3 5k's
3 half marathons
1 10k
2 50k's
1 50 miler
1 100 miler

I'm relatively pleased with that.

For whatever it's worth, the books I've read include:

Seal Target Geronimo (ok)
The Psychopath Test (excellent)
The Art of Fielding: A Novel (fantastic)
Endgame: Bobby Fisher (excellent)
Inside Scientology (fascinating)
My Korean Deli (decent)
The Pirates of Somalia (fair)
Rawhide Down (excellent)
Sex on Six Legs
The Sportsman (good if you are a Michigan sports fan I guess)
Steve Jobs (excellent)
Unbroken (absolutely fantastic and maybe my book of the year)
The Wave (fantastic)56: Joe DiMaggio (good, though a little slower than I anticipated)

I am thinking about my personal (not professional - personal) goals for 2012. One thing I am contemplating is making ,massive changes to my diet. More on that later but thinking about completely eliminating processed foods and moving towards a paleo diet. Need to do some more research though before I fully commit.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

RIP, Dr. London

Some of you know this story, which started with a cold.

The cold was a persistent one, and so I went to see my doctor. I learned that she didn't work on Mondays. Taking her place that fateful Monday was a semi-retired gentleman named Dr. London.

He asked me when I last had a physical; I told him it had been several years. "Well, you are already here" he said. "Do you have 20 minutes?"

I recall that I didn't have 20 minutes but he was such a genuinely nice guy, I said sure, why not.
And that is when he detected the nodule on my neck.

"You have bronchitis," he said, "but I am really concerned about that nodule. Promise me you will get that looked at immediately."

And though he was just a "temp" working I believe one day a week, he called me regularly - for months - for status reports.

The rest, as most of you know, is history. Within a month I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, had my thyroid removed and started radiation protocols. At the risk of sounding a bit melodramatic, my life since has never been quite the same.

I've though about Dr. London a lot these past several years. I credit him with helping save my life. My sole physical interaction with the man lasted 20 minutes, but I will remember him for a lifetime.

I'm not exactly sure what kind of a man, or even what kind of doctor he was. But to me, he was Superman.

I was not entirely unsurprised, but still crushed to learn that he passed away last week.

Rest in peace, Dr. London. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Kicking Butt

The Little Boy did just fantastic on his first meet - exceeded expectations and then some. I'm stoked, he's stoked, his mother's stoked and so is his sister, who also did great. Really exciting to see him out there. I'll post a YouTube video later for the grandparents.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Swimming and the Little Boy

I write a lot about the Girl and her swimming. In a nutshell, she's a superstar. I'm spectacularly proud of her and yet I'm equally proud of The Little Boy, who started swimming in earnest only about six months ago.

He's been swimming his little ass off night and night and he has made incredible headway. It's almost amazing how much progress he's made in a few short months.

Anyway, tomorrow is yet another swim meet yet this time it's not just about her. The Little Boy is making his swimming debut with a 100 breast and 50 fly. He might come in first in this meet or more likely stone cold last. Either way, it doesn't matter to me in the slightest. It's all about the effort and I couldn't be more proud of the little dude.

Go Little Boy, Go. You stoke me.

Pictures to follow soon.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Albert Pujols

I have to admit that I was beyond surprised to wake up this morning and learn that Albert Pujols has signed with the Anaheim Angeles.

I just don't get it and I'm just niot getting sports in general these days. Greed has trumped any sense of reason or legacy.

Pujols was on the cusp of establishing a legacy as the greatest player ever to play for one of the most storied franchises in baseball. If he kept on pace, he likely would have surpassed Stan the Man himself.

And he trades that legacy to play for ... the Angeles? Really?? Honestly, when you are getting paid in the area of $200 million - MILLION - plus over the extended period of a contract, what in the hell does a few million dollars really mean, particularly when such a legacy is at stake. A ten year contract versus the nine that the Cardinals offered? Really?

I just don't get it.

And the Angeles are equally stupid. Offering a ten year deal to a 31 year who had a "down" year (granted - it was a hell of a down year) with a no trade clause is asking for big time down the road problems. They are going to find themselves in the same position the Yankees are currently in with ARod. The dude is an albatross and you think the Angeles would have observed as much.

And where are the Yankees in all this? Seemingly on the sidelines. That I don't get either I suspect they have something in the works. Expect to see some sort of December surprise and soon.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Kindle Fire

Trying something new; I'm using my iPad as my new computer. I received a bluetooth keyboard/case from my client, Logitech and it is making for a pretty cool experience thus far. I'm going to see how it works out as my primary computer during an upcoming trip too LA and San Diego. Should be an interesting experiment.

I haven't posted on technology for a while and have a few dedicated posts coming up. But I did get my kid a Kindle Fire for his birthday and so far, I am pretty impressed. It's more robust than I though and at $199 I think it's an excellent value. What it in't, however is an iPad and I don't think it's necessarily fair to compare the two. But it is an excellent media consumption device and if you are an Amazon-phile and have purchased a lot of digital content from Amazon, it is definitely worth considering if you are in the market for a tablet.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Junior Olympics

Congrats to the Little Girl, who spent the entire weekend at Junior Olympics in Morgan Hill, CA. She swam best times in both the 50 and 100 back and her relay team also did well. I'm super proud of her; these are some of the best swimmers in the State.

My buddy Nick from Chicago was in for the weekend and we had a great time. We went to see My Morning Jacket on Friday night awesome) did the Marin thing yesterday (Tennessee Valley-Muir Beach-Muir Woods et al) and today he ran the half marathon at the North Face challenge - his first *real* trail run. He did very well and I think was pretty stoked. The Little Boy ran with him for a bit and I .. cheered him on. It was nice being out there and not the end of the world but I'd be lying if I didn't say I was dying to run. That said, I get the stitches out on Thursday (seems to be healing pretty well) and should be back in the mix some time soon.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Out of North Face Race

Well, I spoke with a few doctors and I guess I am going to do the responsible thing and pull myself out of the North Face race this weekend. Running a half marathon on a muddy trail with 22 stitches in my shin probably isn't the wisest thing in the world. I sure don't want an infection. Not the end of the world, but I am kind of pissed off at myself. And I'm really not sure how I am going to get through the next nine days of no activity.

Woe is me.

Whatever, me. Could be far worse.

So - now that I'm looking at being a bit of a couch potato - anyone have any good book recommendations?

Monday, November 28, 2011


Well, I fell again. This time at - yes, you guessed it - CrossFit. I was doing box jumps and kind of missed the box. And I got an owie in the process. Kind of a bad one, too - 22 stitches. Which beat my old record by two.

Anyway. I have no one to blame for this but myself.

Kind of not stoked.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving Day Weekend.

Well, a nice weekend was certainly ha by all. We did more activities than I can count: a Turkey Trot; multiple trips to the pool; the Little Girl got a hat; a day trip to San Francisco; some excellent restaurants; the Little Boy got xalle to the torah in honor of one year to his bar mitzvah and oh - we beat that team from Ohio.


Wow was that an exciting game. I really thought we were going to blow it in the end but the Maize and Blue prevailed. It's been too long a time.but boy was that sweet.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Filthy Fifty

I promise not to post every single CrossFit workout but a few stand out as particularly gnarly. Among them includes the Filtyh Fifty, which was our post-Thanksgiving workout this morning. This was made especially hard after several bottles of wine and a 10k in my legs. The workout, which is for time (mine was 30:40) includes: 50 Box jump, 24 inch box 50 Jumping pull-ups 50 Kettlebell swings, 1 pood Walking Lunge, 50 steps 50 Knees to elbows 50 Push press, 45 pounds 50 Back extensions 50 Wall ball shots, 20 pound ball 50 Burpees 50 Double unders

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

A nice Thanksgiving is being had here in NorCal. We woke up early today and per our tradition, ran the Indian Valley Turkey Trot. The kids, Wife and Grandfather ran the 5k (the Little Boy ran 25 minutes; the Girl 30!) and I ran the 10k (47 minutes on completely shelled CrossFit legs, which wasn't half bad). The Grandmother, who's sporting a brand new shiny knee, was our cheerleader extraordinaire.

Anyway, there's so much to be Thankful for this, and every Thanksgiving that I'm almost not sure where to start:

-- my fabulous Wife, my (generally) terrific Kids and our entire extended family
-- the absolute greatest friends in the world
-- continued health and the ability to keep moving forward in a positive way
-- for a wonderful job, great bosses and the best colleagues in the business
-- being lucky enough to love in an amazing town in the best State in the country
-- the freedoms that we all possess and probably take for granted
-- for each and every one of you reading this blog - and I means that deeply and sincerely

I could go on, but I think that covers all the most salient points.

Happy Thanksgiving, all.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Go Blue

I confess to having a pretty severe man crush on Brady Hoke, the new Michigan coach. I had expectations for a successful season but I did not expect to be 9-2 at this stage of the season. Nor did I expect that we'd put a flat out whupping on Nebraska. Not did I expect that there'd be talk about us representing the Big 10 in a BCS bowl.

But here we are. It's exciting as hell and I feel like after three years in the desert, I can finally say it: Michigan is back.


There's a very big But and it's not necessarily the one that belongs to Coach Hoke. We have one very big hurdle yet to get through. We must beat that team from Ohio. It's an absolute must; NO Michigan football season can be deemed a success unless this is achieved.

But I'm a big believer. And I simply cannot wait until Saturday.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Another Nice Weekend with Friends

We had a very nice weekend with our friends the Wiley's, who were visiting from Chicago. They are contemplating a potential move and I'm hoping they liked what they saw from our fair corner of the world. We had a very nice time wit them, but one of the nicest aspects of the weekend was how fast friends our two daughters became. They are just about the same age but have never really met before (or if they did, they certainly had no recollection). It took them the better part of five minutes to warm up to one another, they had a sleep over night two and have been already emailing one another throughout the day.

Things like that just stoke me.

Today we headed to Saratoga, CA for a swim meet that was in our friend Uncle Rob's backyard (almost literally). It was great seeing Uncle Rob - the kids adore him - and the little girl swam fairly well, considering it was a cold, wet day.

All in all, a good time hopefully had by all.

In other news, the long Thanksgiving weekend is almost upon us, and none too soon. I could use a break.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Penn State

Sorry been quiet; been running around in LA and just back this afternoon. Long week so far; man, did I hurt my shoulder/trapezius on Monday at Cross Fit. Egads.


I've been obsessed with this Penn State story because quite frankly, in the history of college sports I've never seen anything quite like this. It makes the Ohio State situation look quaint by comparison. Not sure what there is to be said about the subject that hasn't already been written. It's an utter travesty and it will take a very, very long time for Penn State to recover - especially as it seems the entire story has yet to be told.

For any Joe Paterno apologists out there - and he's a guy that for many years I held in very high esteem - there's no question - none - that he had to go. To argue otherwise is simply foolish. It was his program. Alleged rapes of CHILDEN occurred in HIS LOCKER ROOM. He has to take responsibility for that. The end.

Responsibility. Ironic that he's been preaching that word for 46 years yet when the rubber met the road he turned the other way. Such a travesty on so many different levels, most especially for those poor, poor kids. I only hope that they are able to to find some sort of healing through all this.

Monday, November 14, 2011


The good news is that my hip doesn't hurt any more. The bad news is this is only due to the fact that I think I ripped my trapezius muscle in two and the pain is so near blinding I can't focus on anywhere else.

I injured myself early this am doing a pull up at Cross Fit and this one wasn't subtle. I immediately felt a sharp pain, which is never a good thing. I'm hoping it's better tomorrow but man - this Cross Fit just might kill me. And the sad thing is that despite all these injuries, I absolutely love it (cross Fit that is - not the injuries. Or the pain).

Anyway, here's a photo of me and my ice bag. Been icing it for hours and still kills.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Weekend with Cousins

Cousins are visiting from New Jersey and we are having a very nice time. We've done the entire Marin circuit: Muir Woods, Stinson Beach, our pool, hiking and climbing in Tennessee Valley, vomiting due to windy roads, bike riding, a nice trail run (me and the Little Boy, anyway) and more.

A very nice time being had by all.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Hip Update

I was luckily able to get in to see a sports orthopedist this afternoon. She's pretty good too; she fixed up Coach Phil after his back break.

Long story short, hip issues are difficult to diagnose without X-rays and MRI's, so that's the next step. There's no question there is something going on there, and her working theory is that I might be looking at a torn hip labrum, which would kind of suck, but is not the end of the world. Beyond that, it could be a hairline hip fracture or maybe just acute tendonitis. Glad I'm dealing with it though, as it's been a problem for a while.

The bad news? For the time being, I have to dial back the running considerably. At best, I can run up to five miles on flat surfaces, but only if it isn't bothering me. The good news? I can still do Cross Fit, but just have to eliminate some of the jumping moves. A fair trade off.

Anyway, X-rays on Friday and MRI TBD. More later.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Weekend Activities

Another crazy busy weekend in the Solomon household.

The Little Boy finished his first triathlon on Saturday as part of a relay team. He swam (in the Bay no less - and was fifth kid out of the water) and then the mile run with the team's runner (we will call her S). The Team did great in every respect; they raised almost $9,000 and they finished second overall. They were stoked on both. A great, big, enormous THANK YOU to everyone who contributed to this worthwhile cause. Be on the lookout for a thank you from the Little Boy himself.

ON Sunday we had our last Fall baseball game of the season. Little Boy pitched an inning, caught, got a hit, an RBI and made two clean fielding plays. And the Little Girl swam yet another swim meeting on Sunday. She swam four events and scored best times in each, though she didn't qualify for JO's in any of her events. She was a second or so off on fly, but that's ok - gives her something to shoot for in her next meet.

Anyway, a typical weekend in our household. I went for what I was hoping would be a long run, but had to shut it down after nine miles. I'm pretty certain I have a major issue with this hip; making my appointments and I'm sure we will know more soon.

Friday, November 4, 2011


So, the truth is I've been having a pretty severe lower back/hip pain for quite some time. It's been lingering for a long while but I managed to keep it mostly under control during my training for the 100 miler, though it certainly flared up from time to time, as Coach Phil can attest. It resurfaced after my 50k in August and I think it's been somewhat exacerbated by Crossfit.

Yesterday, while picking up my kids at the pool I was speaking with a friend who's an ex-marathoner. She had a hairline fracture in her hip and her description of the type and areas of pain was eerie. I am praying to the Big Man that this isn't the case for me but have an unsettled feeling. Anyone else out there with a similar experience.

Anyway, I am going to start with ART therapy next week and we'll see if that yield anything. Beyond that, i guess my next stop is at an orthopedist.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Reminder: Little Boy Fundraising Campaign

I really hate asking people for money, especially coming on the heels of my Livestrong/Boston Marathon fundraiser a few years ago, but a reminder that the Little Boy is still raising funds for cancer research as part of his upcoming triathlon this weekend.

He's putting in a pretty solid effort on his own, too: he and his relay-mates went to the local community center this weekend and handed out flyers/talked to local area folk about what they were up to - and why. I was watching them from afar and was very impressed. I'm also impressed with the fact that he's doing the swim (he definitely drew the short straw on that). He's been practicing diligently in the Bay (where the water temperature hovers in the mid 50's) which is kind of scary for a kid who's just coming into his own as a swimmer.

Anyway, one more time, here is the LINK to their site. Thanks in advance for your support.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Junior Olympics

Congrats to the Little Girl. She swam a two day meet - eight events in total - and set a best time in each event. She also qualified for Junior Olympics - a big deal in the world of youth swimming. She's pretty stoked on her performance and I could not be more proud of her.

Friday, October 28, 2011

World Series

Holey moley is this an amazing world series. I'm going to go so far as to say that it just might be the best series I've ever been witness to. While you might say that a Yankees series might be my favorite, that's far from the truth; I'm generally too stressed out to really enjoy the quality of play. With this series, I have zero skin in the game; I truly don't care who wins. I get to sit back and enjoy the game for the pure sake of enjoyment.

And man, has this series delivered, especially last night. It wasn't a particularly well played game, bit it was off-the-charts from a drama standpoint. To think that the Rangers were one pitch ONE PITCH - away from winning the World Series not once but TWICE - that's practically unimagineable. And then to lose by a walk off 11th inning home run by a hometown kid? Seriously - you couldn't script that story. I hope tonight's game delivers the same level of intensity.

My prediction? Cardinals. I find it doubtful that the Rangers can bounce back inside of 24 hours from a back breaking loss like that one. I guess we shall see soon enough.

Man, do I love baseball. How many days until pitchers and catchers report?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Congrats Little Boy

I'm super proud of the Little Boy - he took 10th yesterday at the Marin cross country championships. The amazing thing is how much he improved relative to recent performances; in three previous races this year, his best place was 25th. The best I could explain such a big leap is a. he's been training very hard these past few weeks. I ran with him last Friday and for the first time ever, had to really work to keep up with him 2. he finally learned how to "race." I think in his previous races there's been some gas left in the tank.

Whatever the reason, I'm very proud of him and he is very proud of himself. He was all smiles last night and he didn't take his medal off (medals only went to the top 10 finishers) until he went to bed. He nabbed the last one, which he said was a big motivator over the last 200 meters.

The most important lesson in this and one I think he finally understands; hard work yields results. If you're reading this; great job Kid. I'm super proud of you. Now apply this lesson to other parts of your life too (like - your homework!).

Monday, October 24, 2011


I have to say that my Everday Carry posts proved to be more popular than I anticipated. I received emails from several people telling me they were really into both the site as well as the notion of an every day carry. If you have a photo of your carry, please send it my way; I'd like to get a few more posted. Dad, if you are out there and know how to take a picture with that antiquated phone of yours, please do. Lord knows I'd be interested in what you are carrying.

Nothing too much else to report. I read a great book over the weekend, The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson. It was a breezy but interesting read. I plowed through it quickly so I could start the Steve Jobs bio.I'm about 10 percent of the way in and so far, so good. More on this later - I have to get back to watching the World Series. I don't care much for either team, but have to admit this is a hell of a Series so far.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Wiley's Carry

Note that the Blogger iPhone app seems to cut photos off. If you are seeing an abridged view of this for some reason, just click on the photo and it should enlarge.

Wiley is the one who got me into this nonsense. His carry includes:

IWC chronograph
Etymotic iPhone earbuds
Paul Smith pin-up girl wallet
Hand carved skull keychain (gift from Dylan)
Victorinox midnight manager (includes knife, light, pen, bottle opener, scissors, flathead and Phillips screwdrivers)
Car key in leather pouch
Wallet pen
iPhone 4 (not pictured)

My Carry

iPhone 4s in BookBook combination wallet case
Panerai GMT
Ironman buds with ear lock technology
Moseley Tribe sunglasses
Victorinox Midnight Manager swiss army knife. Small enough to fit on key chain and includes knife, can opener, small pen, flashlight and scissors.

Nick's Carry

This is Nick's Everday Carry.

Wagner slide case/money clip

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Everyday Carry

My boy Wiley turned me on this this website, which is starting to become a quasi-obession. I guarantee that my brother Neil gets really into this too; I know that dude all too well.

Wikipedia describes Everyday Carry as follows:

Every Day Carry refers to a small collection of tools, equipment and supplies that are carried on a daily basis to assist in tackling situations ranging from the mundane to the disastrous.[1] The term EDC also refers to the philosophy or spirit of 'preparedness' that goes along with the selection and carrying of these items. Implicit in the term is the sense that an EDC is an individual's personal selection of equipment, arrived at after deliberation, rather than a standardized kit.

Check out the site if you get a chance; it's pretty cool and has a cult-like following. And how about this for an idea - in the spirit of the site linked above, send me a picture of your Everyday carry that I can post. I'll do the same tomorrow.

Monday, October 17, 2011

iPhone 4S Review

A lot of folks have been asking me what I think of the iPhone 4s, so here are my thoughts.

To kick things off, if you are a 3gs user (hello, Wife!) and your contract is up for renewal, it's a complete no brainer. Nothing to discuss; just do it. If you are an iPhone 4 user you are probably ok unless photography is important to you. The camera is actually THAT good; it's like finally having a solid point and click in your pocket. Same holds true with video as well. I'm constantly taking pictures and video of the kids - I would have upgraded simply for this one aspect (though who am I kidding? I was upgrading even it was the exact same phone).

What else to like? Siri is cool and is clearly the future of mobile. It hasn't been working that great for me thus far - it requires a connection to Apple's servers which appear to be massively overwhelmed. But when it connects it generally works well and you can see that it is without question the future pf mobile. It's a game changer for Apple and I expect that it will iterate quickly - it's currently considered a beta product by Apple - and once API's open up to other apps and services, the potential is sky high. Right now it sits a bit on the novelty side of the fence, but it's something to watch and an excellent differentiator for Apple.

It's fast too, but that's to be expected.. Next to zero latency when opening other apps.

And then there's iOS5 which is fantastic and almost like having an entirely new OS. The best aspect of iOS5 for me personally is the new notification system. I'll do a separate post some time soon on iOS5 but the bottom line is that it delivers on its promise.

There's only one question mark. I have some real concerns about the battery. I've only used it over the weekend - and my use was relatively light, especially for me, but the battery appears more like the 3gs than the 4 and that is not a good thing. I suspect it's due to the new notification system and so I havbe made some modifications, but we shall see. Given how much I travel for business, battery life for me is a huge issue. So we shall see - I'm going to keep my yes on this.

So, bottom line; it's another solid winner from Apple and despite the fact that the exterior remains the same (why mess with near perfection?) it's very much a new product.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Alcatraz Via Kayak

I kayaked out to Alcatraz and back today, in support of Coach Phil who swam one of his insane ultra swims. It was pretty rad; the views and perspectives of San Francisco from the water are indescribable. I wish I took pictures but no way my new iPhone 4s was getting anywhere near the water. I think this is the prettiest City in the US and the views form the water make it even that much more so.

After swimming I ran 11 miles - up and over the Golden Gate bridge and back and then I met up with the family and swam with the kids in the Bay (the Little Boy is prepping for his triathlon swim, per my earlier post). That water is c.o.l.d.

Anyway, a long and tiring day (especially coupled with yesterday's Crossfit workout and a work event in Napa) but a gratifying one.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My Son, The Triathlete

So check it out, the Little Boy is on his way to becoming a triathlete. Like father, like son.

I'm super proud of both him and his two compadres in arms, Gregory and Sydney. They are doing the Marin Triathlon as a relay team to help raise money for cancer research. And y'all know what this cause means to me.

What's really cool about this is it's part of their bar/bat mitzvah project(s) as well. I think this is a terrific effort on their part (by the way, be sure to read the Little Boy's note on their website - not sure how he got suckered into the swim but good for him) and I could not be more proud of the three of them.

I've never asked you all for anything much but if you are able, please consider supporting them in their collective effort to raise $1,300. I have yet to make my donation to Livestrong as part of the Thyroid Cancer run - I will do that soon. But to get things started on their behalf, I'll make a donation on behalf of of all of us.

Again, you can check out the site here. And thanks in advance for your support. I'm sure the Little Boy thanks you too.

Monday, October 10, 2011


I'm probably jinxing the hell out of us with a post such as this on the week of such a big football game, but screw it: Michigan football is 6-0 and regardless of how the rest of the season shakes out, there's no question that our program is finally pointed in the right direction. Coach Hoke is the right man for the job. I was stoked when he was hired and halfway into the season, I'm even more stoked today. He has us believing. I suspect when its all said and done he is going to have a very successful tenure at Michigan. Speaking of Michigan, in addition to the Wolverines they all of a sudden have the Tigers, Lion and even the state college football team. It's nice to see the state of Michigan on the rise, if even just from a sports standpoint; lord knows that theycould use a break. Good for you! Michigan. And Go Blue.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Art of Fielding

I've been reading a ton this year. One of the personal goals I set for myself for 2012 was to do 12 races and read at least 12 books. So far, I'm on track for both. Most of what I read these days is non-fiction, but every so often a reviews(s) comes along that I just can't pass up.

Such was the case with The Art of Fielding: The Novel by Chad Harbach. The reviews have been terrific and I based on the first 200 pages, I can see why: it's just beautifully written. You don't have to be a baseball fan to enjoy this one, though it certainly doesn't hurt. It's longish at 500  plus pages, but it moves very fast.

If you are looking for a great new read, trust me on this one and buy/download this book asap.

For whatever it's worth, I'm trying to get through it sooner than fast so that I can read the Steve Jobs biography by Walter Isaacson. The publication date has been moved up to October 24th and I am sure it's going to be excellent.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

RIP, Steve

What more can really be said? We were truly fortunate to live in the same age as the Man. He was the greatest CEO of our time, a technological/design maestro and his legacy is secure alongside that of Vanderbilt, Carnegie and other titans of business. We were lucky to live in his era, his products were life(style) changing and his legacy will endure probably forever.

Not sure what else to say. It's just so sad. Also goes to show that money can buy most anything but good health.

Anyway, I'm at a loss for words. In many respects, he had evolved into my hero. RIP, Steve. You were taken far too early. Thanks for making things so incredibly entertaining this past decade past.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

iPhone 4S

Well, unless you live under a rock you know that iPhone 4s was unveiled today. And I for one am stoked. Super stoked, actually. And of course, I will be getting one on the first day of availability. I wouldn't want to mess with my four year streak.

For the life of me, I cannot figure out why people are upset that an iPhone 5 wasn't introduced today. Either they are misinformed.or idiots. The iPhone 4 is a near perfect design so I'm not sure why Apple would want to change that. We'll probably see a design iteration next time around (iPhone 5) which will likely be when LTE is fully built out. My guess is that next-generation phone will probably feature a slightly larger screen in consideration of faster download speeds. 

But right now, the iPhone 4 design is just fine and there is an entire ecosystem of accessories already available. And anyway, what counts is under the hood. And from that standpoint, iPhone 4s is absolutely, without question a new device. Speed aside, I am most excited about the camera. As a father, I'm constantly taking pictures and videos, so any improvement on that front is a welcome one. I think Siri is cool - the demo was mind blowing, but I'm looking forward to checking it out for myself in real-life conditions (i.e. a noisy street, restaurant). I suspect it might be one of those features that looks cool but doesn't get much use, ala Facetime.

Anyway, I can't wait to place my pre-order on Friday. Anyone else planning to do the same? Anyone have any other thoughts?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Livestrong Day

Today, October 2, is Livestrong Day, the anniversary of Lance's diagnosis. In celebration I went for a 50 minute swim with the Little Girl and then ran four miles while she and the Little Boy ran alongside me. I was impressed by the two of them - they jumped of their bike and proceeded to run a mile. A nice little brick workout for them both.

In celebration of Livestrong Day and our own little Thyroid cancer run I'll also be making a donation to Livestrong at some point this week. More on that later.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Not sure how many of you were watching, but I think tonight may have been the most exciting night of baseball I've ever witnessed. Me and the Little BOy were going absolutely nuts. Also, I've never been so happy about a Yankees loss  - even an epic collapse like this one.

Wow. Within minutes, Sox blow a 1 run lead (with two outs in the nine and Papelbon pitching no less) and the Rays come back from a 7 run deficit to make the playoffs.

All I can say is this: I can finally put 2004 (the Yankees epic collapse) behind me.

Anyway, Go Yankees. For whatever it's worth the Tigers make me very nervous.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Uno Mas

This here is my main boy Scooter B. Dooder. I met him my first day of college, literally. Scooter has done an amazing job these past 18 months getting himself into shape and I'm super proud of him. Here he is after a 5.5 mile run. Way to go, Scoot. Impressive.

And Last But Certainly Not Least

The Wife and her buds on a hike on what looks to me like Mount Tam. Nice job Ladies. You all look pretty darn good, too, if I do say so myself.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Amazing Job, Y'All - And A Special One Day Extension

Nice job everyone - pretty darn impressive. And thank you all for sending photos - they were all fantastic.

Because we play fast and loose with the rules here (rules?) I'm going to do something different this year. We are going to extend the "race" by one day - a weekday no less (tomorrow or Wednesday - I don't care!) so that we can get one last set of pictures and participation from those of who who may have been otherwise occupied this weekend. That's right, I'm looking at you, Wife, Payro, Dad (tennis?), CrazyMama and Geremy. Snap and send, people.

So have at it, y'all. And if anyone who's already participated has a picture they'd like to share from a Tuesday workout, please feel free to do so.

The Wileys

This here is my main peeps Michael and Danielle Wiley. I've probably spent more time this year with Wiley than anyone other one of my friends. He stokes me (and gave me the idea for the Stoke me blog).

He lifted for an hour and then he and Danielle ran five miles together. Lots of "togetherness" this year - I love it.

The Quirkes

Even though I don't get a chance to see these guys given that we live in different Statesand I've never met the girls in person, I love this family. They definitely win the award for most active overall family. Outstanding job, Quirkes!

From Nick:

Good weekend for the HS Run for Thyroid Cancer. We kicked it off with a soccer game yesterday and wrapped it up with a family 5k followed by individual kids races.

I was so proud of the girls; P won the 3-4 age group up against even the boys and V destroyed the 5-6 race.

Jen logged 12 today including the race and I went 10. All around good day and of course, for a good cause.

The 45 second videos of the girls races are great, and will be hosted on my family blog ( if you are interested.

Talk to you soon.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

And Young Ms. Sellers

In the spirit of young Ms. Berlent's three hours of tennis I present to you Rob's daughter - we'll call her "S" who played three water polo matches yesterday. These young kids are tiring me out. Another awesome sport and outstanding effort.

Young Ms Berlent

Toddies daughter - we will call her "R" - played three hours of tennis yesterday. And look at that form!!! I love tennis so double points for R! Great going young lady.


Here is Gail, who ran 22 miles today. Man, we have some epic performances today! Unreal. I'd write something nice about Gail but her e
Ail to me captures it best. Here's what she says which captures my sentiment perfectly. You're the best Gail.

Hi Howard,

Here's my report for this year's Run for Thyroid Cancer -- did a nice 22-mile training run in your honor on Sunday morning. Thought I would make it extra special by running from my home base, Bayside, to Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, where a passing bike rider kindly snapped the attached picture-postcard of me in front of the famous Queens Unisphere ("Greetings from Queens"). I told him I needed to send it to you in California for a run for thyroid cancer awareness, so that's one more person whose consciousness you've raised.

Thanks so much for your moral support over the last three-and-a-half years. Who would guess that just googling "thyroid cancer" and "ultrarunner" barely a month after my thyroidectomy would lead me to your site and your inspiring friendship? Hope we get to race a long one together one of these days.

Be well and happy!

My Main Man Rob

This here is my boy Rob, who ran 2:40 on trails today. Rob is training for the North Face 50k, which he is running with yours truly. I fully expect him to kick - then drop - my ass. Thanks for getting out there Homie and great job. Sounds like your training is coming along nicely.

The Little Boy

The Little Boy got in on the action. He played some baseball this morning and then ran 4 miles with me this afternoon. He's a heck of a good runner and running with him is among my favorite things in the world. Thanks for getting out there, Little Boy.

My Brother Neil

My brother Neil ran 4.5 while dressed like the dude from Loverboy. He's pictured here with my niece, who did nothing except look so damn cute. Nice job, Neil. Glad to see you back out there my man.

The Liberts

Melissa is another former colleague from Chicago. She and her husband Ben are awesome. So is baby M - I hope I get to meet him some time soon. The Liberts have participated in this all four years - and I'm greatly appreciative of that.

Go Blue, Liberts. You guys are awesome.

John Howlett

This might be a favorite because my ex colleague and John Howlett wasn't known for his love of aerobic activities - back in the day, at least. But that seems to have changed because my man is gearing up for a duathlon next week. Unreal and I'm very proud of him. Here he is getting ready for a run on the Chicago lakefront.

Nice job, Howlett. I'm impressed.


I'm using the new Blogger mobile app for some of these posts and it's a bit frustrating; it's cutting pictures off at edges. So, apologies to Phil (that first swim picture posted below), Rookies dad and anyone else who accidentally gets omitted!!

The Rookie

My main man Glen, aka The Rookie. One of my great buds from high school. Here he is having just ran a 5k with his father and his son. Three generations! Now this stokes me. Nice job Rook and family.

I have several others I'll soon post as well.

This is coming together nicely.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Toddie B

My main man Toddie B might win gnarliest feat of the weekend - he ran the Hampton's Marathon in. Long Island. In his words:

Hampton's Marathon - 3:50

Humidity aside, I gotta give some major props to the RD's. They put on an amazing and brautiful race. Would definitely do this one again.

Can't wait to see every one else's gnarly feats of athleticism.

Congrats Todd on an awesome, awesome effort. Most impressive one thus far.

The Little Girl

The Little Girl is doing her part today and tomorrow - she's swimming her first fall meet of the season. Over two days she's swimming: 100 fly, 50 breast, 100 free, 50 fly, 100 IM, 100 fly, 50 free and 50 back.

That's a ton of swimming.

Swim + Crossfit

So far I have a one mile swim in and a one hour Crossfit. Egads is Crossfit hard - holy smokes.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Coach Phil Swimming 21 Mile, 2 Man Relay

Phil and my friend Vito. What can I say about this? 21 freaking miles - that is truly something. Beyond gnarly. I need to calculate how many "points" this is worth. Suffice to say, a lot.

The Big 1,000

Well, this is quite the milestone if I do say so myself; my 1,000th post. Hot damn - that is a lot of writing.

I recall like yesterday when I first started this blog; more than anything, it was a vehicle to keep everyone updated on where I was at with my thyroid treatments. Obviously, over time, it has morphed into much more than that - not sure if there's isn't a subject that hasn't been covered during the course of these past few years.

The one thing that HAS remained constant though is all of you. I might not have the biggest audience - that was never the intent of this blog and it never shall be - but i sure do have a tremendously loyal one. I've said it before and I will say it one more time: thank you for paying attention and being part of my life. Everyone who reads this is either family - or like family - to me, and I look forward to sharing 1,000 more posts with you (if you have the constitution to handle that of course. I'd understand if you didn't).

One thing which I have mentioned in the past but will surface again is that I am giving consideration to changing the name of this site. To be honest, the only reason I haven't is that I can't come up with anything better. I am open to any and all thoughts and suggestions.

Lastly, tomorrow kicks off the Thyroid Run, so be sure to send your pictures. Alas, I will not be doing my originally planned. I'm going to bend the rules and say that the "Run" kicked off a bit early - last night - by Coach Phil, who swam from Catalina to Palos Verde in a two man relay - a total of 21 freaking miles. That my friends, is incredible. Congrats Coach Phil and I will post your pictures shortly.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Cross Fit

So, I had my first official Cross Fit class last night. I've wanted to try Cross Fit for year's and Coach Phil, who's normally a bit of a skeptic, has convinced me to give it a go.

After doing the complimentary entry class, I signed up for nine "on boarding" classes, where they teach you the exercises in a more one-to-one type of fashion. This is perfect for me because when it comes to weights, my form is generally pretty horrible. After about a half hour of reviewing and practicing various exercises, we went into our workout and it was as tough as advertised. I have the obvious benefit of being in shape, but what I'm discovering quickly is that my aerobic endurance is solid, but my anaerobic - which is the zone where Cross Fit operates - a bit less so.

Anyway, I can see myself getting into this, big time. One area in which I severely lack is the strength department; I'm just not fundamentally strong. Never really have been. It's why I am faster on the roads versus the trails; I am more of a finesse running (roads) versus hill climber (which obviously requires greater strength). I think Cross Fit might be the answer and I imagine it will help my running along the way. I'll be sure to keep you posted.

Monday, September 19, 2011


I'm really stoked on the Little Boy of late. After a bit of cajoling on our part, he decided to do the Fall swimming program with the Little Girl.

That might not sound like much, but in his case, it is. He isn't the world's greatest swimmer, he's swimming with kids/peers who are far more advanced than him (many of whom have been swimming upwards of six years already) and he's swimming alongside a younger sister who happens to be a superstar at this sport.

But he went for it - and I think that's something that took great courage on his part. As his dad, I'm spectacularly proud of him. A lot of kids would have understandably resisted.

Now here is the kicker. He's proving to be really good - and he's improving by leaps and bounds every week. I swam laps with the two of them yesterday and I was literally astonished by his improvement. If he keeps at it like this, I very well might have two stars.

But even if that scenario doesn't come to pass, its the effort that counts and in this case, he's made a great one. If you're reading this, Little Boy, which I think you might be these days, I'm very, very proud of you.

That said - keep at it. I suspect your hard work will be rewarded. If it hasn't been to an extent already.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sweet Home, Chicago

Apologies for my absence; I've been traveling like mad for work. Five consecutive weeks on a plane and I have at least two more to go beforeI'm home for seven consecutive days.

I went to Chicago on Thursday for client events Thursday night and Friday and stayed through this morning. It was fantastic seeing all my Chicago peeps and I miss them a ton. And I loved seeing my new NIECE (!) too - she's three months old and just adorable (just like her mother).

I love San Francisco - it's definitely now our home - but I'm always wistful when I visit Chicago, especially around Fall, which is by far the best season. Chicago just reeks of college football in the Fall and there ain't nothing better than college football. Except the baseball playoffs. But I digress.

Anyway, please remember that this weekend is the Howard Solomon Run for Thyroid Cancer. Get ready for some action and be sure to send photos.

And also if you have a moment be sure to visit Bum or Stokes You and be sure to leave a comment or two. I think I'd like to see this one take off a bit.

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Game For the Ages

Not sure how many of you watched that Michigan-Notre Dame game on Saturday, but it honestly may have been the most exciting football game - let along Michigan - that I have ever seen. And I've been watching Michigan football for upwards of 40 years. Astonishing doesn't even begin to describe it; it was just epic and maddeningly entertaining (though I've sure my Irish friends would beg to disagree). The coolest part was watching it with the Little Boy. I think that's the game that made his a true fan; he struggles a bit with the whole football thing, but even he was jumping up and down. And it was a great lesson for him that it's never over until it's over. Anyway, all that being said, it was an entertaining game but not a particularly good or well played one. I'll take the win, but I suspect that we could possibly be in for another long season. Regardless - Go Blue!

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Any post on any subject would probably be inappropriate on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, a day that will haunt every American for the rest of our lives. The moment from that day that will probably stick with me forever was not knowing whether my brother Scott was in the Towers or not (he wasn't). I knew his office was in the immediate vicinity but I couldn't recall if it was the Towers or not and I couldn't get a line for an hour to my parents. That was a long and scary hour. The other moment that will stay with me was knowing that I had friends in those stricken buildings - and realizing that I was likely watching them die. I wasn't sure who I knew in the Towers, but I knew it had to be someone(s). And I was right. Rest in peace Melissa, Pete and Steve, all of whom were taken way too young. For whatever it's worth, I don't just think of you on 9/11.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Portland, OR

Just back from a whirlwind two days in Portland, OR. I've been on quite the traveling tear of late. I think this is my fourth consecutive week on a plane and next week I'm heading to Chicago. This trip was work related but it was fun. We got tickets last night to the North West Music Festival, which my client (Hyundai) sponsored and saw two great bands: Purity Ring and Phantogram. It was a later night than I'm used to but a fun one all the same. Wish I took pictures but it was a pretty dark club.

In other news, this is my first post using the new Blogger app. If you happen to use Blogger download this pronto; it's pretty impressive. I'm going to post a random photo just to see how it uploads.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Laguna Beach

We had a great time in Laguna this weekend. One of the highlights was the 5k that my company helped produce on behalf of my client, Hyundai. As part of it, we brought in ultra runner Jenn Shelton from Ashland, OR (you might recognize the name if you read Born To Run) and her boyfriend Erik Skaggs, also a top ultra runner. They are both super cool people and the Little Girl and Jenn particularly hit it off together. I think these two are cut of the same cloth.

Posted via email from Howard Solomon

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Greetings from Laguna Beach

We are in Southern California for the holiday weekend - Dana Point specifically. I'm mostly working this weekend but the family is in town and they are having a good time. As am I actually. What I'm doing constitutes work but it is fun and does involve running a 5k tomorrow, one which my team has spent months planning. So all is good. Anyway, I'll try to post some pictures tomorrow. This place is astonishingly beautiful. (Note: I cleaned up typos based on my father's comment. Creating posts on the iPhone is near impossible)

Friday, September 2, 2011

Jeez, Louise

Only two freaking comments to my last post? What's up with that? Come on people, I need COMMITMENTS!!! Rob, you out there? Rookie? Geremy? Dad? ANYONE? Time to come out of the woodwork people. If I get five comments today I'll up my commitment to Livestrong by a few hundred dollars. So - let's hear it!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fourth Annual Howard Solomon Run for Thyroid Cancer

I woke up this morning slightly manic. Actually, I wake up slightly manic most days but that's a post for another day.

I realized that last year we didn't do a Howard Solomon Run for Thyroid Cancer. It's been pretty popular in the past and I think it's time for a resurrection of sorts.

You can read about the last one here. In a nutshell, the Run for Thyroid Cancer (which really isn't a run at all) is designed to do two simple things that are important to me, personally: get people to be more active and give something back to the cancer community. And it's designed to be all inclusive. Anyone can "participate."

Here is how it's going to work this year: if in the aggregate we accumulate 100 points, I will make a somewhat significant donation in all of our names to Livestrong. So off the bat, let me say that this isn't going to cost you a thing. Just a little sweat. The donation will be made singularly by me, though you are welcome to make a donation if you choose. And if you do, you will receive a cool special prize. More on that later.

To participate, all you have to do is something "active" on the designated day. Active doesn't have to be a 50k - but you do have to break a light sweat. Lets go with an activity that gets your heart rate above 100. Could be a brisk walk, a light jog, family bike, a hike or a game of tennis (hi, dad!). You probably get the point. The one thing you HAVE to do to qualify is send me a picture as proof that I can then post to this site. I promise to protect privacy, especially of children.

Here is how the point system will work:

- you get one point if it's a solo activity - meaning just you
- you get one additional point for every adult member who partakes, and 2 additional points for every child
- you get 5 bonus points if I deem the event to be "gnarly". A run over 10 miles would probably count or a bike ride over 40.

The "event" will span over two days and I'm looking at the weekend of September 24-25. It jumps out at me as an active weekend: my daughter has her first swim meet of the season, my main man Todd is running the Hamptons Marathon and if I get permission from the Mrs., I will be doing the Coastal 50k.

Oh, and ten bonus points to Todd if he breaks 3:20 at the marathon. :)

Anyway, that's about it. Exact amount of the donation is TBD but it will be a good one and the specific amount will be dependent on our total points.

If you are in, please roll call it out in the comments. Interested in seeing who's still out there anyway.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

End of a good streak


I'm sad to say I had to wear a tie to work today; first time in nearly three years. We had a meeting with a conservative company and a colleague strongly suggested I wear one. So, with a degree of reticence I complied. Not sure if the thing matched but whatever. Anyway, here's the proof.

Posted via email from Howard Solomon

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Headlands 50k

Just finished the Headlands 50k - otherwise known as the Skinnyman 50k (Todd, I wore my shirt in honor of Skinnyman!). I finished in the not-too-bad time of 6:37, which was pretty good given the fact that my legs aren't entirely recovered from Vermont and I haven't run more than 13 miles since that race. So, overall, I am pleased.

I have to give a huge should out to the co-race directors, Tim and Diana Fitzpatrick. They are just awesome; fantastic race directors and just as nice people. They assumed race directing duties after last year's debacle. They didn't want to see the demise of a very highly regarded race and so they grabbed the reigns and did a fantastic job - one of the best run ultras I've ever done (this was ultra number 14 for more btw, to go along with 12 marathons). They personify everything that's good about this sport; thanks Tim and Diana for a job well done. It was a pleasure meeting you both in person. And I'm real glad that a story that ended so sour ended up so sweet.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

And We Are Home

A mere 13 hours after leaving my parents house, we've arrived home. We could have been to Europe in that time; the near four hour delay made it kind of brutal. We had a great trip East - always a highlight of the year, but I'm happy to be home and have us all return to some degree of normalcy.

In other news, the Yankees set a major league record today by hitting three grand slams in one game. We passed by Yankee Stadium as the game was being played. I'm going to take that as some sort of cosmic message. What it might mean, I have no idea.

Over and out for now; got to rest up for my 50k race on Saturday. Scratching my head trying to figure out why I signed up for that one.