Empowerment Through Fear

Pump.

Lift.

Pump.

Lift.

Pump.

It’s been awhile since I touched you.  I’ve often looked at you with a lingering stare.

Lift.

Pump.

I miss you.  I want you, but I’ve been afraid.

Lift.

Pump.

Lift.

I’ve been afraid that I would get hurt again.

Pump.

I’ve been afraid to get back on you.

Lift.

It’s not like I didn’t want to be one again.

Pump.

But as I get older, I’ve begun to examine my mortality and it’s been hard to be reckless once again.

Lift. Pump.

And yet, we weren’t completely reckless.

Lift. Pump.

Together, we were free.

*     *     *     *

And so, I lifted my bike on my shoulder and walked it down the back stairs.  Tires freshly pumped.  Lights on and brightly blinking.  Click, click of the gears as I walked to the alley. I raised my right leg over the blue frame.  With a breath, I lifted myself on my bike and pedaled.  The wind whispered softly in my ears I pedaled down the orange glowing alley.

Nothing could have prepared me for this moment.  After being hit by car while riding my bike (in a bike lane) last July, it’s been awhile since I could get myself to ride again.  And not just ride along a trail, but truly ride.  Ride and be free.

And this moment, as my legs powered through each pedal, I haven’t felt this free and empowered in ages.  The bike became an extension of my body and my blood flowed through the bike as if we were one. I finally felt free again.

I caressed the blue frame that I loving call my Tardis.

“It’s good to be back,” I said to her as we zipped through the dark streets of Chicago on our new adventure.

Top 10 Quotes of 2014

Here are my top 10 Quotes of 2014:

No. 10:

“I’m a chronic over wiper.”

Jenn K.

No. 9:

“Don’t throw peanuts in my mouth.”

– Pham

“Well, I don’t eat [penis], so how would I know?”

– Sara W.

No. 8:

“I threw up and it was purple everywhere!”

– Matt C.

No. 7:

“Has Miss Piggy ever looked this good?”

– Mark U.

No. 6:

“No, it’s not your Dick [the Elephant Towel]. We share Dick.”

Jess G.

No. 5:

“If I have to get down and dirty with a princess, Ariel. If I want to go exotic, Jasmine.”

Jenn B.

No. 4:

“Don’t be weird, come to my bedroom.”

– Anne P.

No. 3:

“The vagina gift it’s a family gift.”

– Pham

No. 2:

“I thought selfie meant masturbating.”

– Dan C.

No. 1:

“After two beers, my English is perfect!”

– Pawel Z.

Previous Top 10 Quotes

2013     |     2012     |     2011     |    2010     |     2009     |     2008     |     2007

Merry Christmas 2014

Merry Christmas!

A Quigley Christmas

Christmas 2013   |   Christmas 2012   |   Christmas 2011   |   Christmas 2010

Christmas 2009   |   Christmas 2008   |   Christmas 2007   |   Christmas 2006

The First Time I Experienced Racism

I was a senior in high school and my computer class drove to St. Joseph’s College in Indiana for a programming competition.  We were the only school that came from Chicago.  Most other schools were from central Illinois & Indiana.

Prior to the competition, my classmates and I were huddled around a cafeteria table cramming for the exam.  Everything looked normal to me. High school students working together trying to help their school win. Until I looked up and happen to turn to my right.

A young male, who had the attention of his classmates, said the words, “Damn those minorities.” And proceed to point his finger as if it was a gun, triggered, and shot it in my direction.

That was the first moment of my life where I truly saw race for the first time.  That male student was white.  Heck, everyone in the cafeteria was white except for my school.  There was 4 white, 3 Asians and one Hispanic.  We were the only diverse team in the competition.

I turned to my friends to see if they saw what just happened, but they were too focused on ensuring that we would compete well.  And we did.  We finished in second place.

But to this day, I still don’t understand how or why the color of my skin brought so much hate to that teenage white male kid that he wanted to kill me over a computer programming competition.

I was 17 and that was when I experienced racism for the first time.

Bladder Control

I remember as a kid hearing the sound of my parents going to the bathroom in the middle of the night.  I was confused by that action because I never the understood the point of waking up in the middle of the night only to fall back asleep.  I mean, why couldn’t you just hold it?

Yeah, if you were a child or infant, I’ll give you that excuse. Your body isn’t fully developed and your bladder is a lot smaller. But in high school, college and crashing at friends places; all of them have to wake up in the middle of the night to pee.  Call me weird, but I was just baffled.

Since a child, I was able to hold my pee until the middle of the night and pee in the morning. No unnecessary wake ups to walk to the bathroom, turn on the bright light to awaken yourself, walk back and hope that you fall back asleep.  I just slept and pee in the morning.

(Sidebar: also learned the hard way as a teenager that peeing with morning wood isn’t pleasant.)

When I started to drink, I understood that situation where you had to pee.  You broke the seal.  You put so much liquid in your body in a couple of hours. Get that pee out stat lest you wet the bed.  That, I get it.

As an adult with ahem, sleepovers, I never understood why  my significant other would get up in the middle of the night to pee.  “Can’t you hold it?” I would say.  Which may have been followed with a pillow to the face.  They were all jealous of my amazing bladder control.

But within the last year, I noticed that this hasn’t been the case anymore.  My alarm goes off at 7:30, but my bladder can only wait until 7.  As of a few weeks ago, it moved to 6:45.

WHAT IS HAPPENING TO ME?!

What’s the point of going back to sleep for another 45 minutes?  Can’t I just hold it like I use to?

Ugh, EFF growing old.

Ugh, I Need to do My Chores

I was good at having guests over at my place at least once a month for the sole purpose of regularly cleaning my apartment. I mean, I wanted to see my friends too.  But the incentive to clean my apartment was higher.  Higher than basically any other possible time.

I feel like it’s a never-ending battle. A battle where I finish with one chore, it already starts to get messy again.  The worse is that no matter if I try to blitz, the blitzing never gets complete because I get exhausted.  If I decide to do one chore a night, e.g. bathroom on Mondays, sweeping & mopping on Tuesdays, etc., I still lose because by Friday, the floors are dirty again.

All this frustration comes down to this: I WANT A BLOODY ROOMBA!

I just don’t know if I can justify it.  Does owning one makes me too lazy to sweep my floors?  But I have a pet, so it’s a lose-lose on the floors.  A Roomba would help collect all the dust and fur.

But who am I kidding?  I secretly want this to happen:

Cat Riding Roomba

The Guilt has Returned

The one thing good thing about running marathons and marathon training is the copious amount of food that you’re allowed to eat.  Your body needs all the nourishment it can get and 3000+ calories days are often normal & at times still put you in the negative. Even days leading up to the race, a few extra hundred calories only help build up the reserve that you need.  Finally post race, you’re in almost 5000 negative that you’ll take a few days to recover the loss.

Alas, today I am no longer at that point.  With my season being over, I now have to watch what I eat.  What I’m basically saying is that I’m a fat ass and my guilt free eating days are done for the years. Sorry folks, Thanksgiving isn’t guilt free for me anymore (I use to end my season on that day, but that’s no longer the case).

Though I still have a few more rest days to restore the damage I did to my body in the last 3 weeks (seriously, 2 marathons in 3 weeks?!), off-season mentally has rolled in.  Except this time around I want to do something different.  Instead of being a couch slob, as I was last night, I want to prepare for the next season.

I know I can be a fast runner, but in order for that to happen, I need to work on it.  The two key elements for this to happen is 1. I need to work on my core and 2. I need to lose weight.  I haven’t pushed this weight in almost 3 weeks.  I’m heavy and I feel it.  I’m still surprised how well my legs and lungs are to handle the running.  But 10-15 less pounds would make things a lot easier.

The guilt has returned and now I need to figure out how to use that guilt to help me prepare for another season.  Because who am I kidding?  Food is awesome and I will eat it all. But until then, the guilt is settling in for winter.