New Houston Hopeful Interview: Jill Howard

Extreme heat! Vicious eels! Multiple attempts to vomit!

This is just a typical day in the life of a world class triathlete. Jill Howard has experienced these challenges and more as she’s climbed the ladder from starry eyed charity marathoner to Team USA triathlete to, now, Olympic Trials hopeful. If there’s one word that comes up again and again in her interview, it’s “determination.” She’s got enough to spare.

Apologies for the wait. This one was too long in coming, due to a ridiculously busy June and July. The next profile, with two-time previous (2004, 2008) qualifier Heather May, will appear in August.

Google search oddities

Today’s keyword treat:

“fuck a girl in ridgewood”

Yeah, well. Okay. Why the hell not?

I just wish I’d had better content for the poor Googler.

Podcast FAIL

I’m hoping of the handful of readers I have out there, one of you will be able to clue me in on how to easily (and cheaply) record a telephone conversation as a podcast. Idiots do this every day, so why can’t I figure it out?

Here’s my badass setup: a Plantronics USB headset/mic (model Audio 470 USB, if you must know) and a Samsung NC10 netbook running Windows XP Home Edition v. 5.1.

As I wrote to Matt of the the Dump Runners Club (who I’ll be highly annoying to in person in about a month at the Green Mountain Relay; I’m sure he’s campaigning to not be in my van even as I type this):

I’m trying to get a series of interviews going with masters women who are trying to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Marathon Trials. I want to interview some of them by phone and present those interviews as podcasts (MP3s or whatever the format usually is). Only thing is, I’m retarded when it comes to this stuff.

I bought a USB headset/mic and attempted one call (with my SO) using Skype and something called Hot Recorder. What I got was hilarious. I sound normal. He sounds like Mr. Snuffleupagus on quaaludes. I attempted to work with the file in Audacity, but all I get is a short screech.

Inspired comparisons like this shouldn’t go to waste in an email, so I thought I’d post it here for maximum comedic mileage.

But after the laughter fades, the issue remains: when it comes to podcasting, I don’t have a fucking clue about what I’m doing. Can someone out there help me? Please. Help me. These women have lots to say and I’d like you all to be able to actually understand what they’re saying.

Google search oddities

Today: “crapped herself”

The madness continues.

It’s April. And that means insane geese.

I see a pattern. In early-to-mid April, the geese go mad.

First, there was this haiku from April 14, 2007:

Today on my run
A mad goose chased after me
Vermin with feathers

On April 27, 2008 I wrote this:

Sighted today:
Badass Goose Dad: I know it’s spring because the geese couples are beginning to show up with their little fluffball chick children. Which means Dad Goose goes batshit if you get with 10 yards of the family. I was chased by a hissing goose a year or two back, and it’s an image seared into my brain. Today I gave them wide berth and even had to employ the “make yourself look really big” trick (arms akimbo) to psyche out the goose. One time we were in a car and a goose charged the car!

Finally, this from a post of April 19, 2009. Incidentally, I find that reading this post makes me particularly sad, as it was written while I was at the height of fitness last year, mere days before I began my slow, steady descent into a months-long period of overtraining syndrome.

And today I had my first bonafide smackdown with a male goose. He came charging at me, hissing and tongue-wagging. I couldn’t find a stick in time (my usual defensive move, stick waving). So I threw my arms akimbo, ran straight at the goose and screamed, “Fuck off!” Goose reversed course and scurried away. Unfortunately, there were no witnesses to capture the moment for YouTube posterity.

I had my first encounter with an ornery goose this morning. It wasn’t even that bad. Just wait until the eggs have hatched. Fortunately, I have Photoshop.

Kathy Switzer’s at it again

Specifically, marathon racing. She’s even got a blog!

For the uninitiated, a bio of Ms. Switzer.

And on a tangentially related note, this thread just popped up on LetsRun.com. Switzer’s mentioned (I think — her name is badly mangled). Other highlights include a mention of the famously awful 1964 Olympic Trials on the Yonkers Marathon course, which is colorfully rendered in the bio of Buddy Edelen. And Patti (Catalano) Dillon makes a surprise appearance.

Google search oddities

Today’s catch phrase: “girl with bottle in groin”

I guess I picked up readers with the three key concepts: girl, bottle, groin

I’ll stop here.

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