Monday, March 19, 2007

And the wheels come off the shredmobile + Running Update

First, let me recount a great moment in the history of Finny...

This past Saturday was the turning point in my 10k training. The point where, according to my training schedule, I would be running a full 6 miles. Granted, a 10k is 6.2 miles, but to me the big moment of truth is the actual treading of 6 full miles. And when I printed out this training schedule from Runnersworld I was actively weary and suspect of this 6 mile marker positively looming on the calendar. FRIGHT.

This past Saturday, however, I checked it off the training calendar like it was MY JOB, PEOPLE! Not only did I do it - I kicked it's ass. In fact, I ran it in the same amount of time that I ran my 5.5 miler a week earlier.

The moment when I passed under the orange tree at the end of my street, known to me as my "home free" marker, I thought to myself,

"Self, you are about to do something you never thought you could do. You are about to finish a 6 mile run. GO FAST!"

And I did. I ran as fast as my little twigs could carry me over that last .3 miles from that tree to my house.

And that, my friends, was a positively great moment in the history of Finny. Next weekend, 6.5 miles. The weekend after that - the race.

Resume FRIGHT status.

As is becoming tradition in our house, I wash down all my long runs with a healthy dose of yard work. Usually involving scary new machinery and ultimately resulting in big yard waste piles blocking our street parking. This week was no different.

Per my original Master Plan, we proceeded on to the rental place to borrow us a little slice of heaven known as a Wood Chipper. We would come to know this fine piece of demolition machinery as the ShredMobile.

After dealing with the mostly off-their-fucking-rocker yard dudes at the rental place, we experienced what can only be perceived as yard work perfection.

We towed home the shred beast, backed it down the driveway (this was Bubba showing off his finely-tuned maneuvering capabilities), pointed the chip shooting arm toward the tarp and set ourselves up to chip/shred the felled tree.

10 minutes later we had a (surprisingly small) heap of mulch, just enough to cover the vegetable beds and future Pumpkinzilla site.

And if you're as riveted by proprietary machinery as I, feel free to indulge your senses with a close-up view of the ShredMobile in action:

So, with the shredding done and the beds covered with a fine layer of fresh mulch, all we had left to do was hook up the ShredMobile and return it to it's rightful owners (the aforementioned lunatics at the rental yard.) Easy like Sunday morning, no?

Stop me if you've heard this one before.

All lightheaded with our weekend success, and not even dirty for that matter, we hook up the ShredMobile to the truck and, after waving goodbye to all our disappointed neighbors (they thought they would finally see one of us lose an arm) we began our slow (no faster than 50mph!) return to the shop.

But no.

We smell a weird smell. I think Bubba has perhaps smoked the clutch from the fine driveway maneuvering one hour prior. Bubba has similar thoughts. We continue driving.

Then Bubba catches a glimpse in the rearview of our neighbor jumping up and down in the street, waving his arms and holding something greasily ominous in his fist.

Go ahead and guess what it was...

Ah, magical - it is the wheel bearing from the ShredMobile.

We come to an immediate halt and survey the damage/make sweet love to our neighbor for stopping us before getting on the freeway.

Damage: The bearing has come completely off of the axle. The tire is leaning inward on the axle and is not AT ALL connected to ShredMobile. There is a greasy mess where the bearing used to be.

After having a minor stroke thinking about the mayhem that would have ensued had we actually taken this thing on the freeway, or over 10 miles per hour, Bubba sloooooooooowwwly returns the ShredMobile and it's not-so-much attached wheels to our house and I make the distress call to the rental place to request a pick-up.

Disaster averted. Mulch-making achieved. Pants filled. Neighbors properly smooched. Relief sighed.

On to the next life-altering backyard project...


  1. Brava, bravissima, for the run. I am so proud of you, Bombshell!

    And, ShredMobile? Awesome. You guys are my yard work heros.

  2. Eeek! Wheels falling off??

    I had a wheel fall off a VW Beetle once when we were driving it. It was spectacular, but I think your Shredmobile wheel is better :)

  3. I remember that feeling...I haven't been running like I should, or even want to. It finally started snowing, THIS WEEK. F-er. So, I have a host of excuses. But, I'm really impressed at how you've stuck to it. You sound so much like me, that i have no doubt you'll hit that 10-k flying and start planning a half marathon :)

  4. Shelley - Thank you, doll! It's definitely a matter of having a goal in mind. If this were must me running "for fun" I'd never be up to 6miles by now. As for the woodchipper - you gotta love a machine that can reduce an enormous dead tree to a pile of valuable garden mulch in a matter of 10 minutes. Beauty.

    Ash - You should have seen our faces. We totally jinxed ourselves. We had finished wasting the tree and were getting ready to head back to the rental place when Bubba goes, "Wow, that was easy." I'm pretty sure that's when the bearing came off the shredmobile. He jinxed us.

    Jess - I never thought I'd get to this point, but I'm glad I've kept it up. Of course, it helps to have the support of all you veterans to reassure me that this feeling actually exists and to keep going. honestly, I never thought there was hope beyond 3 miles.

  5. way to go on the 6 miler! You're half way to a half marathon.


[2013 update: You can't comment as an anonymous person anymore. Too many douchebags were leaving bullshit SPAM comments and my inbox was getting flooded, but if you're here to comment in a real way like a real person, go to it.]

Look at you commenting, that's fun.

So, here's the thing with commenting, unless you have an email address associated with your own profile, your comment will still post, but I won't have an email address with which to reply to you personally.

Sucks, right?

Anyway, to remedy this, I usually come back to my posts and post replies in the comment field with you.

But, if you ever want to email me directly to talk about pumpkins or shoes or what it's like to spend a good part of your day Swiffering - shoot me an email to finnyknitsATgmailDOTcom.