Got back to the hotel from work. No family obligations. Work was done. Hmmmm. I had this nagging feeling all week since I punted on my 20 miler on Sunday out of lethargy. So let's do it now. Where to go? Part of my problem sometimes is just getting the route figured out that makes sense. Something with round numbers. Something that doesn't feel arbitrarily arbitrary. So tonight I thought, let's see how far Stanford is from the hotel. Google Maps? 10.0 miles. Point zero. Done.
The trip consisted of 1 single road the whole way known well to Californians, El Camino Real. I have a connection with this street as I lived right off of it several times throughout my college intern days. We did all our eating and shopping off this street it seemed. So tonight I ran 10 miles up it to Stanford and then 10 miles back home. I couldn't help but think as I entered Stanford about how my life might be different now if I would have gone there. I got accepted for grad school but bailed on going. The other thought going through my head was...my feet kind of hurt. Going from running on dirt to running on concrete sidewalks is not good.
The most drool-worthy sight on the run was the McLaren dealership. Yes, please. I might never get that Lambo in my garage but these are nice. Same cuts as some of my favorite Lambo models. Not as big of a car. Interesting.
It was 11 PM by the time I was getting back near my hotel. I had 3 gels and no dinner. Nothing much was open but I knew there was one steady choice a block away.
Ah. I don't know if its the best post run meal but it was hot and available at 11 PM. Kind of like your mom.
I went 20.30 miles with an elevation gain of 150 feet in 03:00:00, which is an average pace of 10:33. View my GPS data on Garmin Connect.
My new place of employment in the Bay Area has me over to the west further. I used to hit the east side mountains before or after work for my dose of trails while in town. Now its a little far and much more traffic in between. I need another option. Well, those on this side of town always talk of Rancho so I figured I would seek it out after work today. But when I arrived, something was lurking in the bushes.
Seemed like quite a network of trails from the map. I instantly tried to figure out what the best loop to the top was...if there was a top. I haven't explored new trails in a long time. I run the same loop everyday at home. Here we go.
I headed up the PG&E trail. Named after the power company here. Probably because there were powerlines overhead. I made decent work of it even though I wasn't really pushing hard. I wasn't sure where the next turn or hill was so I was just in a cruising gear. Plus it was 90 degrees out but the trail is mostly shaded which gave a lot of relief.
Took about 40 minutes to get to the Vista Point spot. It claims a few of the Pacific but it was pretty foggy over the water but I knew it was out there. You could go on another 2 miles to the Black Mountain Summit but I wouldn't have enough light for the return and these parks close up...like lock you in...so I didn't dare. Here was a shot a the top. I came up on the right under the powerlines winding through those hills. Then you can see a trail on the left on the grassy hill where it goes back down. Kind of fun terrain.
Nature! There were signs for cats and coyotes but I only saw their food.
Descending the other side was fun except I was in my Nike Free's which offer limited trail traction. Plus I realized I had not downhilled in longer than I should have so my legs were slow to get moving back down.
Got back down to the lower trails in time. Twilight was just hitting when I got to the parking lot. That was my 2nd run for today. An hour this morning. 90 minutes tonight. After a crappy week last week on the run, this felt pretty good. Pretty smooth. Actually more relaxing. It was nice to be out with no time constraints just cruising some new hills.
I went 8.70 miles with an elevation gain of 1,668 feet in 01:26:20, which is an average pace of 09:55. View my GPS data on Garmin Connect.
Attention Leadville runners and friends,
I will be hosting another annual LT100 Night Run this year. Same deal as last year, mostly. Show up at my house in Leadville around dinner time. Hang out, fuel up (lightly), then lace up. We will shuttle runners 4 miles over to Fish Hatchery to save you from dreaded pavement miles. We will then run 20+ miles of the Leadville course in the inbound direction finishing at my house. We will lose daylight during the Powerline climb so you will get to try out all your night gear before race day. This is a group run, not a race. We will be spreading out with varied paces but then gathering back up at various points along the way. The course will not be marked but its not hard to follow, especially with company.
The date is August 3th, 2013. This is also the weekend of the Boom Days festival in Leadville. So bring the family and make a day/weekend out of it.
I have posted the event on my RunLeadville.com site. I would appreciate it if you can go there and RSVP so I know how big I need to plan for:
After the run (around midnight), we will gather inside my house for food and drinks and lively conversation. My wife will cook and supply various food products but you will be encouraged to bring something to share. More on that later for those that RSVP.
Our showers will be available. You are also free to camp in our yard. I have limited space indoors.
Hope to see a bunch of you there! Its becoming a classic.
For those not in the collection industry, its sometimes hard to explain what Local Counsel Collective does. I have various versions where I say its like this or that but for lawyers. However, now we have a professionally produced video like all the other cool kids with stick people and all! So now I will just show this video when people ask...if they have 2 minutes and 10 seconds.
BTW, we are hiring again. Need more part time help. Work from home. Inquire within. Equal opportunity employer as long as you kick ass.
I was excited when this year's NARCA conference was going to be held in Sin City. They owed me after Baltimore last year (but that ended up nice). I haven't been to Vegas since New Years 2004 when we saw Metallica. The place changes year by year so after nearly a decade away I knew there would be changes. I flew in a day before my family for the conference. Along with my partners, Eric and Angela, we had a great show and met lots of great prospects. But that's all just work stuff. Bor-ing. Well, it wasn't actually. We are changing an industry and it was fun to continue the journey.
The forecast had the temps rising each day until 101 on Monday. Phew. I am not heat trained yet. I got a run in the first day I got into town. We needed a keyboard for our booth so I put on my shoes and ran to Best Buy a few miles out. Cruised through UNLV's campus on the way. The keyboard was small enough that I put it my Nathan pack and continued north to the Stratosphere. Then all the way back down the strip to the hotel. It was 8 miles of sidewalk and stop lights. Not fun. Really killed my motivation to run while in town. Rest days anyone? Oh, and there is a pool. 8 of them actually. Can I count swimming?
The conference was at Caesars Palace so we stayed there. Nice to be able to stay air conditioned while coming and going to the conference. Had a conference once in July in Orlando. I died. Anyway, we also had a Starbucks in the hotel right at the bottom of the elevator. Kim couldn't have it any closer.
We got our booth all setup and did our evening reception to open the show. After that firehouse of booth visitors, it was time for a drink. Check out this bar. Real women dancing behind a screen to alternative music. Score. Some folks commented that you could go a block off the strip and see real nude women dancing. Oh really? Well, these are the hottest chicks ever. Look at her face!
My crew showed up late Friday. It was Sydney's 10th birthday so she got to come to Vegas. So its a cool place for kids if you know where to look. We went to Disneyland a month ago. Time to see the adult playground. Over to the Bellagio to check out the conservatory. Huge butterflies and pretty gardens. Sydney looked cute running around town ready to shop. Except she had this weird dwarf in her pictures.
We hit the new buffet at Caesars. Something like a $17 million renovation and now the best buffet in Vegas. The food went for miles. And it was all gourmet everything. We ate their for breakfast once and dinner on Mother's Day. Everything was top notch. You just had to abide by the rules. This one was hard.
Reagan ended up hitting the jackpot by finding a candy store were you get a huge tube of pick-your-own candy. Then a rabbit that had a mustache on it -- and a stitched butthole in the back. That's my kid!
My kid's were intrigued by the artwork and sculptures around town.
Oh wait...that one above was 2003. Sydney and I found the same spot and tried to reenact. They painted the wall behind it apparently.
We had my parents with us. It was Mother's Day and all. Love you, Mom!
I tried to reward my own wife on Mother's Day but at $25 this "kit" from the mini-bar just was too expensive.
I think the coolest thing in town is still the fountains. Could watch them all night. So relaxing. So fast and powerful. My kids thought they were amazing. We watched 4 shows in the course of an hour.
Sydney liked them! Oh wait. Sydney, that's not appropriate. This isn't a rock show. That's my kid.
Kayla's favorite part of the trip when I asked her was meeting this guy. Big hero! Totally a ghetto version of the real thing but it worked for this 3 year old.
She is kind of into Star Wars. Check out the shirt she bought the next day. Any shirt you want Kayla of these 1000s they sell. THAT ONE!
How about a boat ride in the middle of the Nevada desert?
For our final night, we went and saw Mystere by Cirque du Soleil. This is their oldest show in Vegas. The original I guess you could say. It was the only one kids under 5 could attend so it was the only choice. The kids really liked it. Will see another next time we are in town.
The next morning as we were leaving, they were filming a movie called "Think Like A Man Too" in the lobby. We were walking to the cab and I saw Romany Malco (from Weeds who is in this movie) walking by himself up the sidewalk. I was like "I know that guy" and gave him a nod. He gave me a nod back. Kind of like he was walking around looking at people like "I am a movie star and you should know me". And I figured it out.
This was the only nature I found in Las Vegas. And its fake. Time to head back home.
See you again in 2014 Vegas for the next conference. I am too big for you.
In Las Vegas for a conference and we are staying at Caesars Palace. No Caesar did not live there. As I am doing a bit of trip planning, I realize that Sir Elton John is playing at the Colosseum at the hotel. That is the venue built for Celine Dion when she started her Vegas residency. Now, a few different performers come for various stints to play there. The likes of Celine, Elton, Shania, Rod Stewart and others too like Jerry Seinfeld. Kim was fairly excited about the showing saying it would be great to see such a legend. Let's do it. Here is what $250 a seat gets you. Just behind the board. Lower was $500 - $1000. Too salty for me. Maybe for Celine. Not.
No intro band. Just fire up the first song and came out cold to The Bitch Is Back. There was the diva himself. With the sparkle cape on and two gentlemen following to remove it.
He had these ornate stage pieces on the sides with various themes from his songs. A big screen in the back that came to life differently in each song. Some songs were with a 16 person band. Other songs he just did solo.
He told a bit of a story between songs. Name dropping and all. "When I was with John Lennon" or "when I played the 9/11 tribute concert". Etc. Hey, he did that stuff. Amazing life spanning decades of playing.
At one point, they lifted those side pieces and had the whole stage open up. This was Philadelphia Freedom with a big video backdrop.
The audience was full of older white couples tapping their toes. Not my crowd. Used to sweating and sometimes bleeding on each other. But hey. Elton would rile the crowd and try to get them up. I bet he is used to this. He did a good job building over the show. When Crocodile Rock came up as seen below with the green backdrop, the people next to me did a full on swing dance in front of their seats. They never moved an inch before this.
They had camera on the sides of the stage but I couldn't figure out the use. But finally, they started panning in and showing Elton on the big screen. That was fun. Then would go through the crowd and such.
I enjoyed when they used the camera on the piano to show fingers. I don't play but Elton seemed to be banging away on that Million Dollar Piano. That was the show name, after the piano. The program said that's what it cost to build because of all the fancy componentry and LED screens and such.
The concert was very "jam band" -- which was good. Extended versions of songs. Piano trailing off. Songs I had never heard. They did this Indian song which had this amazing guy playing percussion. He was the probably the highlight of the show. It was 10 minutes of awesome. They finished by clearing the first 5 or so rows (those $1000 seats) and bringing them on stage to surround Elton for Saturday Night. Most of the folks on stage had their cameras out the whole time trying to capture Elton playing for them 1 foot away. Neat.
Overall, it was a 2 hour show that went by in a flash. Quality entertainment. We went to a Cirque show the next day and this concert was way better in comparison. At 66, Elton has a rich history and a lot of classic songs. It was by far the most mainstream biggest artist concert of my rock show history and I enjoyed it. Its amazing to see someone who is a master at their craft do anything live. This was the last show Elton has before summer break but he will be back in the fall. Get tickets and see it. Its fabulous. I might even wear a boa next time.
Go out so-so, when it hurts find a 7-11!
-Brandon Fuller, 2013
The girls had another track meet today at Boulder High School. It was in the mid-80s at race time. Nobody is ready to run in that weather yet. Plus, they spent last night sleeping at the zoo and were falling asleep on the drive to the track. This can't get us maximum race performance. Oh well. They ran 50m, 200m, 400m. One more meet last week.
As for me, I had to watch Kayla while they were gone so I wasn't able to get out on my long run until today. But then I thought to myself, what would Dean do? No, I really didn't think that. But I remember how Dean first inspired me to run to and fro various nonsensical things. This was his brilliance. So I decided that I would run home from Boulder High.
This is not a new adventure. I have run from home to Boulder. And back. With a Green Mountain in between. I looked up at Green as I stripped down to just my shorts in the high school parking lot. Still looked snowy and would easily add 90+ minutes for just that up and back. Plus, my ass would be really dragging coming in tonight. I passed.
So at 5 PM, I was off from the school and down the Boulder Creek Path for the run home. Oddly, I usually have run home just up the highway because I am dead. So instead I reversed the Lobo trail out of Boulder, which is super windy in spots. Not the most efficient way to travel in a specific direction. The temps were up and I hammered down 3 gels in the first hour. Phew. By the time I was up to Highway 52, I was out of water with no obvious refills in sight. I usually duck in a church but they all seemed closed up at this hour. The parks are not on yet because of our recent snow spell. They all love to wait until its fucking summer to turn the god damn water on in the parks and let people use the shitter. Apparently, nobody takes a dump over the winter at the park because we are all hibernating.
As I was cresting this miniature hill in Niwot, I bonked. Cramped up too. Dehydrated. Not much I could do. I pulled out my phone and texted my wife for kicks. Part of me wanted her to say, "oh we are nearby and will get you and take you for ICE CREAM". I was delusional. Oddly, I started checking email while fast walking to work out the cramp. Then I checked Facebook because what else should you be doing in the middle of your long run? Saw Tony's R2R2R2R2R post and enjoyed that while the cramp subsided. I can't say I was instantly motivated but I did get back to a run again shortly there after.
As I came through Longmont, I knew one thing. I had to get some calories in me. So I ran up a side street and over to 7-11. How would society exist without this wonderful establishment? I went in all smelly and shirtless with my credit card out like a weapon. Water. Red Bull (not diet!). Snickers. Advil. "Do you want your receipt?", she says. Sure, I will shove it down my pants. Whatever. I went outside and sat on some firewood for sale and filled my bottle. Popped the Advils and chased it down with Red Bull. Lots of people hang out in their cars in the parking lot there and I think the commentary about me had to be interesting. I proceeded to shove the entire Snickers bar in my mouth like a porn star and head on out. 2 blocks later. Life was good.
The sun was down at this point and twilight was subsiding fast. That darkness where you can run on sidewalk because of the moonlight but can't see anything on your watch anymore. Some quick math...like simple addition...indicated that I would be 0.5 miles short of a true marathon knowing my landmarks. Well, we can't come up short like that. I recalled the April Strava Challenge where you have to run a marathon. OK, fine. If Brownie can run a 3:40 and get it, I guess I can phone in a 4:10 or so. And so I kept at it. Felt like I was flying in the cool night air after that hot day. Hit the watch light to find out I was burning up 9:30 pace. Watch out everybody. The Advil kept me from crying my way home but didn't improve my physical capabilities. Guess I will try EPO next time.
My wife texted me, "Are you close to home yet?". All I could figure was that she wanted sex or something by this point. Again, running in the heat makes you delusional. I came into my neighborhood and had to do one of those bullshit loops where you have to spend another 1/2 mile or you will come up short when you hit the house. God damn those suck. Feels like bad planning. So I came down my street to a bunch of dark houses and nobody outside to tell me how awesome I am because I just did the impossible. Kind of. Not. I tried to get inside but the door was locked. Then I realized nobody took the trash cans out. So I did that. My job is never done.
Came inside and everyone was asleep. Clearly worn out from the zoo. Not from worrying if Dad made it back from Boulder. That guy is nuts. Like Dean.
I went 26.29 miles with an elevation gain of 334 feet in 04:08:06, which is an average pace of 09:26. View my GPS data on Garmin Connect.
Sydney and Reagan joined a running club. Click on their names for the full scoop. First race was last weekend at Boulder High School. 2 more races in the series. So on Sundays...you will find me in Boulder on a track. Weird. I thought they only had trails down there.
This is a great show I thought to myself last Friday. A guy in front of me has the concert t-shirt on. As I peruse the back of it I notice something interesting. San Francisco. Wednesday. I will be there! Boing. Why not?
Off to the Warfield in San Francisco I go. Was curious how a like the same show on the same tour in a different city would be. You know how they go...you are the best crowd...well, do they say that to everyone? Time to find out. Arrived just as Halestorm got started after some terrible traffic. Lzzy got started in the same leather outfit as the other night. OK. Do they wash these things between shows? Where do they do that at? Or she has multiple? These are things I must seek the truth to.
So same set as I recall from Friday. A lot of the same banter between certain songs.
She has a great range in her voice. Enjoyable to hear. Again, her mic was so clear. Lots of bands (even B4MV tonight) back off the vocals so much in comparison. Anyway, definitely a Halestorm fan now after these 2 shows. Read a little backstory on them how her and her brother (drummer) started the band at 10/12 years of age. Dad played bass. Played some county fair and then decided this was what they were meant to do.
Time for Bullet! The crowd had been pretty stationary until now. Things livened up but never got to a mosh the way Denver does. Denver wins.
Matt had a different outfit on for the night. Only person on stage that changed as far as I recall. Same set tonight as Friday. No encore again.
Lzzy was in the wings as Dirty Little Secret began. I knew what to expect there. Same deal as Friday. Its a good mix but then she backs off for the back half of the song because its not her gig.
Overall, I enjoyed seeing it again. B4MV is a favorite band and you can't go wrong catching them twice. On the same tour. In different cities. Science project complete.
Post rock show dinner at IN-N-OUT!
After a full two days of unemployment, I had to get off my butt and find a job. So I headed out to Mountain View, California and joined my friends @ Blue Jeans Network!
Many familiar faces (Ted, Luke, and more!) here at Blue Jeans exposed me to the company. I believe the vision of video conferencing everywhere still needs to become a reality. We were trying at Cisco. But these guys are in a unique position to pull it off by being a interoperable cloud-based player in this market. Here, let us tell you about it.
So I joined the team as a technical leader. Still working from home out of Colorado...courtesy of video conferencing, of course! Thanks to my friends in and out of Blue Jeans who helped me out on this transition with advice. Should be fun to be at a small company once again. Who knows...might just end up back where I started if things go well.