Thursday, January 31, 2008


First there was Festivus. Now there is "blogligation."
Blogligation is that sense of duty one feels to regularly post to one's blog. Sure, "blogligation" would not pass the Scrabble test. Still, it feels like a word, like it should exist, and I am determined to make it happen. So, today, five minutes after discovering the word, I contacted the folks at the Urban (link somwhere down there on the right), and I have officially submitted my word with appropriate synonyms and antonyms, for their consideration.
They really should charge a fee for reviewing submissions, or maybe pay people for the really good ones like mine. I can't imagine who reviews the submissions for a living. They wake up in the morning, have their coffee, get to work, and start reading emails with words like blogligation, prostipation (opposite of constipation), iGods, etc. My only hope is I can finally leave a permanent mark on our language: "Blogligation. I feel a blogligation to post SOMETHING!" (Submitted by Scotty R. from Mount Vernon, WA.)
By the way, the Urban Dictionary is for adults only.
So, this week the weather has been windy, with wind, and rain. I've been hanging out with my friend Gym. I am a member of the Young Men's Christian Association, which is very popular in Bellingham. If things clear up, I may go for a 21 or 31 miler at Lord Hills in Snohomish on Sunday.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Skagit Eagle Run

I ran the Skagit Eagle Run today. I made this run up, all on my own, which I do sometimes. Puts the fun back in the run. In honor of the Skagit Eagle Festival, the rule was I had to run until I saw an eagle. I DNFed, somewhere in the middle of the Nookachamps Valley, after about seventy-five minutes. I saw one raptor sitting in a tree above Francis Road, and it might’ve been a juvenile eagle, but I think it was a hawk, or maybe a falcon. It wasn’t bald—it was brown, sort of like the peregrine falcon in the picture here. Apparently there are five falcon species in my backyard in the winter months---the word is the Skagit is one of the best birding places in the United States, which sounds right to me. As far as birds go, the Skagit reminds me of the Eastern Chesapeake Bay area, which is also an estuary, rich in bird life. On my run, I passed a herd of Canadian Snow Geese, and maybe some Trumpeter Swans, sitting in a barren field in the Nookachamps. Then I saw a few pods of Pipers, swarming as a group up and down and into trees. Pipers = Favorites.

Yesterday I ran up to the top of Chuckanut Mountain. Fragrance Lake was frozen over and you could throw rocks on the lake and it would make a piiiiiiing echo sound. There was snow on top of Chuckanut, ankle deep. The best part of that run was heading up into the snowclouds, which were flying over the top of the mountain. Lots of people out, even in the snow covered areas, which was nice to see.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Mars On Ice

This is my official no. 2 post. Hopefully it lives up to its name.
It was an absolutely clear sky tonight, again. It's been this way all week. I missed out on a full moon snowshoe hike up at Mt. Baker on Tuesday night. I made up for it a bit tonight, by going out for an hour and a half up the hill above Arroyo, towards Lost Lake. Headlamp required. It was more like hiking on the uphill, and jogging all around, because the mud was icey, and it would've been easy to lose an ankle on a mud rut.
The cool sighting of the night was....The Planet Mars! I think. It was a red star in the southeastern sky. If it wasn't Mars, it was still red, and it was still cold out.
I heard about a non-profit that sounded kind of cool--the International Dark Sky Association. Their mission is to protect the nighttime skies from light pollution. It's tough to find anyplace anymore with a truly dark sky, and folks a 100 years ago could see a whole lot more stars than we can today. Dark night skies with stars are cool.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A Blog Is Born!

By immaculate conception, even.

Weekend update: I ran around Blanchard Mountain in shorts in the snow, breaking trail, and my fingers got snippety after a couple hours. Lilly and Lizard Lake were both frozen over. Plans uncertain for this weekend.

Tonight the moon is waning, two days ago it was waxing.