I’m sitting in the back seat clenching my fists and everything else, on my way to Logan International Airport. Traffic is moving at a snails pace–when we’re actually moving. but hey, my flight is scheduled to go (if I get there on time). Luckily, I’m in good hands. The driver, Ronnie, knows what he’s doing.
My luck is suddenly changing … We’re up to 25 mph! And I’m not carsick. So there.
Call me unpatriotic, but I don’t follow the Olympics. Never really have, except when there’s controversy. Like in 1994, when Nancy Kerrigan got her knee whacked by Tonya Harding’s bodyguard. That sound bite, “Why me?” resonated for months to come, and who couldn’t forget when Harding pointed at the laces on her skates, crying and pleading with the judges. Well, we couldn’t forget it because both instances were parodied to death on late night TV.
Fast forward to Sochi. So much has been made of the security (or perceived lack of), the poor accommodations (have you seen the photos of all the half-built hotels and bathrooms with toilets lined up in a row with no privacy?), database hackers, and streets with no manhole covers to name a few things. Wait, how did the Olympics end up in Russia in the first place? Oh yeah, corrupt decision makers.
Anyway, forget all that. One thing/person I have been following—only because it’s been on the news every night for the past two weeks—is snowboarder Shaun White. He’s been widely criticized by his snowboarding peers for pulling out of the slope style event. They say he doesn’t love the sport as much as they do, he’s not a team player … blah, blah, blah. Really? He basically put the event on the map. They’re just jealous of his success.
Unfortunately, for White, he came up short today and didn’t win a medal in the halfpipe. Maybe the conditions weren’t ideal (which has been widely reported), or maybe he had a bad day, but it still doesn’t erase the legacy he’s already earned. I don’t blame him for pulling out of the other event and risking injury. He earned his ticket to compete, just like the rest of them.
Everyone has their own take on Chili. No two chilis are ever the same. It’s a universal, American dish that many make during the cold months—or as we like to call it these days, the inescapable polar vortex of hell. You can make it spicy or mild; with or without meat, and you can pretty much throw in the kitchen sink if your heart and palate desires. I have a few chili recipes that I rotate—traditional chili with ground round, white chicken chili, and a new turkey chili recipe that’s similar to Panera’s.
I changed up my traditional chili the other day, and incorporated as many veggies as possible to give it more texture and flavor. Carrots, celery, onion, green pepper, chili beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, black beans, in addition to canned tomatoes and tomato paste. Oh, and water, otherwise you’ll just have a mass of sludge.
My secret ingredient is probably something you already have in your pantry and you would never consider putting in chili, but trust me, it makes a world of difference, and prevents the chili from being too acidic (from the tomatoes). Here it is: Beef gravy. Yep. Learned that from an old farmer—my dad.
Lisa and I are on a new running kick. We’ve challenged ourselves to run 20 miles a week every week, for the rest of the year. It wouldn’t be so bad if we could run outside, but because it’s been like 0 for the past three weeks, we’ve had to run it out on a treadmill. and. it. sucks.
Sundays are my long days, so this morning I knocked out seven miles. on. a. treadmill. I think it’s more painful mentally than physically to accomplish this. I feel like a hamster on a hamster wheel. Running, sweating, and going no where. Lisa is even more insane than I am. She ran eight miles.
Even though I already feel exhausted, there’s a good reason we’re doing all this ridiculous training inside: Next Saturday we’re running a 10k race in Memphis, and we’re meeting my pal Cathi and her sister Jo. They’re from Lafayette, Louisiana, so I may come back to Peoria with a bit of a drawl.
Cathi never leaves home without her hair rollers in case of a major hair disaster.
This is how I feel today. Every phone in the house rang at 5:00 a.m. notifying us that District 150 is closed. Snow day number 4 for the kids
Snow days for me – 0
Days my kids don’t understand I actually work from home and can’t be disturbed – 0
Days in a row my kids don’t fight with each other – 0