Sunday, December 31, 2006

Goodbye 2006, Hello 2007.

Congratulations all, we all now have official '007 status. Giving us liscense to make it a killer year. I am looking forward to another year and very grateful for the past year. I won't say 2006 has been all hugs and puppy dogs, in actuality it was probably one of the toughest and most challenging years of my short life. I can't remember any other year being so emotionally draining, so mentally challenging, and so filled with surprises. Yet at the same time, it was a year growth, discovery, learning, moving past big-make that ginormous obstacles, mistakes and lessons learned, and most of all seeing the distance between the boy I was (and sometimes still can be) and the man I have grown into and continue to become and realizing that perhaps the things most scoffed at in youth can also be the things of great importance and respect as I get older. I began playing ice hockey and have rediscovered my love of phyiscal sport, after to many years without it, my body is responding well, though more slowly than I like at times to healing from various injuries. 2007 looks to be a year of hope and promise and perhaps big changes, Lord willing. Yup, I can feel's coming in the air tonight. '007...shaken, not stirred.

Oh, and by the good of an engineer as I may be...can anyone read Russian? I have a Christmas present that has mainly Russian instruction. Though it does have pictures....which is how I usually put things together anyway.

God Bless You All, be safe tonight....I'll talk to y'all next year.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas to all and to all a blessed night!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

THE RULES: Each player of this game starts with the 6 weird things about you. People who get tagged need to write a blog post of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. (I'm not tagging 6 folks, I'm only going to tag is Christmas time, so my gift to the world will be having 3 folks not tell us stuff).
1. I am in the College Football Hall of Fame, though I never played college football.
2. When I was very young, I wanted to be a fire truck when I grew up...that's right a fire TRUCK, you did not read that wrong.
3. I am distantly related to former Red Sox left fielder and Baseball Hall of Fame member, Carl Yastremski..
4. In high school two of my nicknames were "Special" and "Golden Boy".
5. I set my alarm clock to 1 minute later than I want to get up..6:31 AM, etc. Unfortunately, I usually am up before it goes off, so the extra minute sleep is wasted.
6. There are two degrees of separation between me and Garth Brooks and there is one degree of separation between me and Willie Nelson.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Be patient with me dear readers. I'm stuck with a dial up connection for a few days, so blogging will be slow.

As we prepare to celebrate Christmas, let us remember the true meaning of Christmas has nothing to do with materialism, consumerism, or captialism. It's about the Light of the World being born in the City of David.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Mary's Last Words

I was reading Cardinal O'Malley's blog today and came across something I had not thought of or pondered before. He mentioned Mary's last words in the Gospel. I think all Christians can take them to heart and realize the profound meaning behind them:

“Quodcumque dixerit facite”
or translated
“Do whatever He tells you.”

Saturday, December 16, 2006

John Paul the Great's Letter To Women

Tonight I was browsing the Vatican website. Particualry, I perused the Papal Archives and found John Paul the Great's Letter to Women. I read through it and could not help but be amazed at a man's insight into women. Quite amazing. I was struck by one part near the end which just hit me as great knowledge and great writing, even in the english translation it reads to me like poetry, which is not surprising seeing as John Paul the Great did enjoy writing poetry. The excerpt reads as follows

Necessary emphasis should be placed on the "genius of women", not only by
considering great and famous women of the past or present, but also those
ordinary women who reveal the gift of their womanhood by placing themselves at
the service of others in their everyday lives. For in giving themselves to
others each day women fulfil their deepest vocation. Perhaps more than men,
women acknowledge the person, because they see persons with their hearts. They
see them independently of various ideological or political systems. They see
others in their greatness and limitations; they try to go out to them and help
them. In this way the basic plan of the Creator takes flesh in the history of
humanity and there is constantly revealed, in the variety of vocations, that
beauty-not merely physical, but above all spiritual-which God bestowed from the
very beginning on all, and in a particular way on women.

The whole letter can be found here:

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Hopes and dreams. We all have them. Some large, some not so large. Some we will achieve and others we won't. Does not achieving some of our dreams makes us a failure? No, not at all. I once dreamt of being a professional baseball player. I spent hours upon hours perfecting and honing the skills I would need to make that happen. Then one day I realized, I was never talented enough to compete with those who went pro. Sure I hit them and could hold my own, but I was missing that something they had and I had to give up the dream. Didn't make me a failure, because I tried and for whatever reason it didn't work out.

Big dreams, I have them. Wife, kids, house, nice plot of land to ride my horse on (don't have a horse, though I'd like one), a job that places food on the table and pays the bills. Will I have all of that, it would be nice, but they all may not be in the cards.

Small dreams, pass the P.E., enjoy my job, live a life where I leave a legacy to my family in the way the live their lives. On my tombstone, I'd be happy with "He Lived".

However, what we're "supposed" to do often get's in the way. I moved here 4.5 years ago to do something bold, something unexpected, and something I have enjoyed since. I don't regret my decision one bit, it's been a grand adventure. However, when does adventure end and the "supposed" to do stuff start creeping back in? I don't know the answer to that, but I am having my suspicions which is kind of scary if you think about it. You see I'm a dreamer, and dreamers, well, we dream. And sometimes, those things we think are holding us somewhere, well, they're not holding us at all. We're holding us by being afraid of chasing the dream. We're not failures if we don't achieve them, we are chicken shit if we don't even try to chase them. Let the chase being, cause there ain't nothing holding me back. Second star on the right, and straight on till morning.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Medical Lesson

So recently I've noticed that I must intake more fluids to ward off dehydration than I had to when I was younger. I find myself battling the symptoms for 2 to 3 days after playing hockey. Granted I skate and play hockey quite a bit, so I am battling dehydration most of the time. Which is why, I have cut back on alcholol conspumption to the very rare occasion.
Now I know all about the needs to hydrate properly. You see I've been through hell weeks in the August suns of two-a-days in football when the mercury topped 90 and humidity was at 90%, and I wrestled for a long time. Both scenarios taught the importance of proper hydration.
Back then water and Gatorade where the main staples and they still are. However, there is a ton research out there and a lot of other choices in the form of energy drinks, which though tasty, are pretty much liquid sugar and speed.
So what am I to do with all these choices. Do I grab water, gatorade, powerade, juice, milk, chocolate milk, energy drink, a certain mix of them all?
Well, lucky for me I just read something interesting. Chocolate milk when injested after a workout actually helps the body. So there is an option. Water is always good as are sports drinks like powerade and gatorade. Energy drinks, though giving a sugar boost, don't help the body recover or replenish fluids.
This leads to the Seven Rules of Hydration:
Seven Rules of Hydration

1. The rate of passage of water from your stomach into your small intestine depends on how much fluid is actually in your stomach. If there is lots of water there, fluid flow from stomach to intestine is like a springtime flood; if there is little water, the movement resembles a lightly dripping tap. Therefore, to increase stomach-intestinal flow (and overall absorption of water) you need to deposit a fair amount of liquid in your stomach just before you begin your exercise. In fact, 10-12 ounces of fluid is a good start. This will feel uncomfortable at first, so practise funneling this amount of beverage into your "tank" several times before an actual competition.

2. To sustain a rapid movement of fluid into your small intestine during your exertions, take three to four sips of beverage every 10 minutes if possible, or five to six swallows every 15 minutes.

3. If you are going to be exercising for less than 60 minutes, do not worry about including
carbohydrate in your drink; plain water is fine. For more prolonged efforts, however, you will want the carbohydrate.

4. Years of research have suggested that the correct concentration of carbohydrate in your drink is about 5 to 7%. Most commercial sports drinks fall within this range, and you can make your own 6% drink by mixing five tablespoons of table sugar with each litre of water that you use. A bit of sodium boosts absorption; one-third teaspoon of salt per litre of water is about right. Although 5 to 7% carbohydrate solutions seem to work best for most individuals, there is evidence that some endurance athletes can fare better with higher concentrations. In research carried out at Liverpool John Moores University, for example, cyclists who ingested a 15% maltodextrin solution improved their endurance by 30 per cent compared to individuals who used a 5% glucose drink. The 15% drink also drained from the stomach as quickly as the 5% one, though many other studies have linked such concentrated drinks with a slowdown in water movement.

5. A 6% "simple sugar" drink will empty from your stomach at about the same rate as a fancy 6% "glucose polymer" beverage, so don't fall for the idea that the latter can boost water absorption or enhance your performance more than the former, and don't pay more for the glucose-polymer concoction.

6. Contrary to what you've heard, cold drinks aren't absorbed into your body more quickly than warm ones. However, cold drinks are often more palatable than warm ones during exercise, so if coldness helps you to drink large quantities of fluid while you exert yourself, then keep your drinks cool.

7. Swilling drinks during exercise does NOT increase your risk of digestive-system problems. In actuality, most gut disorders that arise during exercise are caused by dehydration, not from taking in fluid. Dehydration induces nausea and discomfort by reducing blood flow to the digestive system, so by all means keep drinking!

It is funny, my hydration strategy isn't all that different than it was when I wrestled back in the day and was getting thrwon by Nate Carr and John Smith (they're Olympic medalists and both kicked my ass in high school...they had already won Olympics medals when I got thrown around by them). But it does differ quite a bit too. It's not a before, after, during practice thing anymore, it's a 24/7/365 thing now.