Monday, January 30, 2012

The Destiny of the Republic - a review

Whether it is her choice of topic or her style of writing, Candice Millard is my new favorite biographer. I read her first and second offerings this past year. Her first, The River of Doubt ranks near Lansing's Endurance, the standard bearer for adventure epics. It recounts the fateful journey of Theodore Roosevelt, his son Kermit, the heroic Candido Rondon and company down the previously uncharted Amazon River called the "River of Doubt."

Somehow, I really don't know how, her publisher found me. He asked if I would mind receiving an advance copy. How cool! I thought (and a little spooky). I half thought it was a scam. I didn't really believe it would come...until it did.

And so, I was given a galley copy of her second book, The Destiny of the Republic. It details the events surrounding the death of James Garfield, a president I knew nothing more than the fact that he had been assassinated during his first year in office.

I now can say that his death is one of the most tragic events in American history. Garfield was an amazing man, humble and selfless, who certainly had the character and potential to become one of the greatest leaders this country has ever produced.

It was more than a pleasure to learn this "forgotten" history. Thank you, Ms. Millard for bringing it to our attention.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

If You Got It Flaunt It

Direct quote from my beautiful daughter earlier today: "Daddy, you're so handsome. You're booty sticks way out."

So it's apparent my broadside has not escaped my daughter's attention. And you know what, I'm ok with that. My booty is large, and it's going to stay that way. If the 5,000 miles I've run the last four years haven't managed to shave off the inches, then nothing's gonna...nothing I'm willing to try. And I'm ok with that. 

It certainly helps that despite my bubble-shaped posterior I can still hold my own on the pitch, the rock, and the trail with kids half my age - and that despite possessing a wide load I was able to score a smoking hot bride - and all things considered I have ended up with a pretty stinking great life in spite of this big old butt.

Then again, maybe I have it all wrong. What if my booty is what got me where I am? In other words, what if my booty is like my camel hump - my fuel pack that gives me that extra boost when I need it? What if my booty was what got Lia to first notice me? What if it's what makes me handsome? What if that is what A-Ro was saying?

And you know what? Either way, I'm ok with that. Because as Ulla Inga sings: when you got it, flaunt it.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Run Up Has Begun

It's just been announced: Mr. Davidson 2012 will be held Labor Day Weekend at Davidson College. So if you happen to find yourself in the mood to watch some balding overachievers dook it out on the hallowed ground in front of Chambers, come on. The more fans the more hilarity. 

Speaking of is a short email exchange between Will Baldwin, large animal vet extraordinaire ("Turn and moo, cow") and me.

Date: Wed, 11 Jan 2012 11:05:06
Subject: Re: Mr. Davidson 2007 Results

The mere thought of Laundry Bag Survival made me almost dookie in my britches. 

Ned Erickson

"Genuine faith is hazardous to your health." Michael Yaconelli

On Jan 11, 2012, at 2:03 PM, Will Baldwin wrote:
Subject: Re: Mr. Davidson 2007 Results

It makes me do something entirely different in my pants.

Needless to say, it's going to be an incredible display.
And who knows, now that I actually have a son named David, maybe it will be my year.  

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Running in the New Year

For the last few years, Murf and I have been trying to convince all our friends to participate with us in the annual Tanglewood New Year's "Running of the Lights" race.

It's a great time. Somewhat surreal as I do not stay up normally past midnight, nor do I normally run at said time.

Regardless, it's pretty stinking amazing to run through a million or so Christmas lights.

That being said, you would think that all our friends would want to run with us. But alas, as in years past, no one did. Not true. There were over 1,000 people who did. They just weren't any of the ones we invited (except Kurt Telford. Way to go Kurt!)

Honorably mention goes to my lovely wife, Leela, who has run two out of three years. No honor to Murf's wife who chickened out for no good reason (my opinion). I'm still simmering, Al. There, I said it.

Anyway, last year I ran fast enough to get a prize (one of the two or three fleece blankets I accumulated over the year). I didn't want/need another fleece blanket, nor did I want to run until I wanted to throw up, nor did I want to wake up the next morning feeling like I threw up, so this year I was determined to keep the pace down.

I took some precautions. Put in a long run earlier that day with my new awesome neighbors, the Sabios. Put down a couple brews during the pre-party. Dressed in costume. Gray sweats, Rocky-style, with the headband and wig you see on Santa above. And finally, started about halfway back with Leela and Murf.

But man, when that count down counted down, I couldn't help it. The first mile was rough going - weaving through walking jogging revelers. I finally hit my stride at the turn around. And I don't want to toot too loud on my horn, but I kicked it into high gear.

There was something about running through twinkling lights in my Rocky getup with my guido wig bouncing around that got me going.

Turns out, I finished 2nd in my age group. Not too bad if I do say so myself. I woke up the next morning  with some old man soreness. But all in all, I was glad I did it.

And to top it off, no fleece blanket this year!