COVID Vaccine Thinking.

 Are you a young person who has not yet been vaccinated against covid? Do you wonder if the vaccine is good for you and your biome?

Go to minute 32 of this video and listen to the vaccine discussion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hZ4AotgJGI

Make your decision. 

Now, the whole video is fascinating regarding human activity on the plant. If you have the time, listen.

COVID Close to Home

 I\’ve known about the pandemic for months. I\’ve been a careful mask wearer for months. But I hadn\’t encountered a person with Covid in real life until this month. It scared the shit out of me and my co-workers.

It turns out that an infected girl in the time frame of being contagious was at work. Where I work we wear masks, but we are not able to social distance from each other. And we touch each others tools and work stations. The girl was at work on a Monday, and experienced symptoms a day after being at work, a Tuesday, and did go to a doctor. Her initial Covid test was negative (taken too soon in the cycle), so the doctor gives her some medicine for symptoms and antibiotics (really? Doctor doesn\’t know shit). The girl develops a heart condition due to the medication and ends up in the hospital for 2 days. A second Covid test is positive. (Have these doctor heard that Covid affects the heart?) Sad situation for a 23 year old woman. 

This time line so far took 9 or 10 days. So the manager at work doesn\’t know about the positive Covid test until 10 days after the girl was at work and contagious. At first, the positive test has to be reported to a district manager (time taken). Then the approval was given to send home anyone in direct contact with the sick girl. Well, crap. These other people were at work, not social distancing for 10 days, not knowing anything about the sick girl. (Luckily, no one else got sick. Masks work I guess).

I didn\’t work with the sick girl, but I did work with everyone else. I heard about the exposure on day 11 when a guy on my shift was sent home. Even then, it wasn\’t the manager who told me. I heard parts of the story in the form of gossip over a head set.

That afternoon when I left work, I was pissed. I couldn\’t figure out the time line at that point but I knew it was 10 or 11 days when I finally heard the second hand information. I stayed by myself for 2 days. I was concerned because many of my friends are in their late seventies or eighties. Finally on a Sunday, day 13, I call my manager and ask her to explain the time line details to me. I need to know if I can go around other people safely. She explains what I wrote above.

My next work shift is that Tuesday at 11:30. At about 8 in the morning, I realize I am terrified to go into work. I look at all the pieces of this puzzle. I realize that there is not a chance in hell that our workplace can really be safe. Does a person know if they have contacted the virus? How many days are they contagious before symptoms? How many days until you can get a valid test, and then results? 

Now I\’ve known about some of these facts, but you don\’t really understand how all these features play out until it happens in front of your eyes. Then you realize that you can\’t be safe at work. My answer was to quit.

I will also say that this girl turned up at work again on day 16. She still had symptoms. They let her come back because of a negative test. But actually, we don\’t know for sure that she was not contagious.

My co-workers were hot about this. The manager wasn\’t there today, so tons of conversation went on. I wasn\’t the only person to be afraid and angry.

Covid really sucks. It is a squirrelly disease. This time line will happen again because thats how the disease plays itself out. That is why I decided I was done with that work place. (Luckily, I have other options).

Everyone stop and think about the time line. Realize that you will get caught up in this Covid cycle at some point. It is inevitable that you will be exposed at some point. Lets hope you have a mask on and you wash your hands alot. Or you will be sick.

Keep Breathing – 2020

 Last week was focused on my 35th sobriety anniversary. 8/8/85 is my sobriety date.

I love being sober and I cherish my sober adult life. I love the fellowship of AA. It is a spiritual fellowship offering unending spiritual growth and conscious contact with a power greater than myself. Alot of people weren\’t even born in 1985. It gives people pause when they ask about my shirt and what 1985 means. I got sober in the last century.

I have a friend who makes masks. She made me some coffee masks to go with my job at Starbucks:

Speaking of Starbucks, I finally got my manager to move me to the afternoon shift. Yay! No more getting up at 3 am more than once a week. Actually, Starbucks may have outlived it\’s usefulness to me. Moving to afternoons may be a temporary measure. Quitting is inevitable as my personal wealth continues to expand and the health insurance game becomes less necessary.

What interests me the most today? Coincidence x 3? Part 1 of this coincidence: COVID is a respiratory disease. One thing I became aware of a few days ago at work was that I was breathing through my mouth more when wearing a mask, especially when stressed during a rush. Don\’t do it. Keep that mouth closed and force yourself to breath through your nose. Do this consciously. Ensure your respiratory health by breathing through your nose. Part 2 of this coincidence: I started reading a book called \”Breath\” by James Nestor. Very interesting the health and longevity proposals related to breathing. And then, part 3 of this coincidence: My hero Courtney Dauwalter had to end her attempt at an FKT (fastest known time) of the 500 mile Colorado Trail due to acute bronchitis. She ended up in the ER on low oxygen. Yipes! I cried. Too much dry dusty air through the mouth. 

Something about breathing. Everybody, take a long deep breath in, hold for a beat or two, the long slow breath out. All the way in and all the way out. Just like sex. Don\’t hold back. Feel better? I do.

Bad Ass Marathon

I have a friend who thinks I am a bad ass. I haven\’t known how to respond to that since I don\’t feel like a bad ass.

However….after today, maybe I do.
Wouldn\’t someone who has run, as of today, 100 marathons in her life be a bad ass? Or who ran a 100 mile race? Or became a millionaire? Or who finished monastic formation? Or successfully accomplished FIRE (financial independence retire early)? Or who had been sober for 34 years? Or hold down a job at Starbucks at the age of 62? Or, many other things I have accomplished in this life.
So, someone who completed a 600+ mile virtual race across Tennessee, in half the allotted time, ought to be a bad ass. 
Well, a few days ago, I did the math and saw that I was getting down to the end of my race across Tennessee.  A tiny thought went through my mind, \”Do a marathon to finish it off.\” Along side of this impending finish was the fact that I had failed to complete a virtual marathon during April because when I had got to 22 miles, my feet hurt and I quit because a virtual race didn\’t mean anything.
Well that is a good idea: finish off a 600+ mile/ 2 month effort with a celebration by running a marathon. Be a bad ass! But also, I felt a little resistance because of that failure in April. Should I try this again? I didn\’t want to feel like a failure again. I haven\’t done that many miles in one run for awhile. Can I do it?
To sign up for the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee was an impulse from my inner being to begin with. It felt so right. And, 20,000 other people, and some dogs, have joined me. My success at carrying out the project was effected by alignment with my inner being. My energy was lined up with my inner being and momentum was generated to complete the project. In fact, I have been obsessed with getting miles every day, even walking on the treadmill to complete miles in the afternoon after a shift at work.
But, to do a marathon by myself, I needed more than a vague idea. I needed to strongly intend to do it. I needed emotional momentum. I needed to line my energy up with the idea. This means some practical activities like getting all my drinks ready the night before. Taping my toes. Setting my alarm clock. It is hot here so a person has to get up early to finish running a marathon. Still, I had to sit down with my journal last night and explore my fears. I had to complete a focus wheel to raise my vibration in relation to the idea. I had to segment intend by remembering how I felt during a 50 mile race last November when I had been in the zone and finished trouble free. I had to think honestly about this upcoming segment and my intentions for it. Was the idea an ego idea that would fail or an inner being idea which would succeed? It is up to me to decide and then  line up with the energy. These energy activities are to experience the success in advance so it is the cause. 
The alarm went off at 4 am. I did have to decide at that point whether to get out of bed. That has happened before too, not making it out of bed I mean. But I did get the idea of how I would feel if I completed a marathon versus how I would feel if I went back to sleep. I remembered how good it feels to run in the early morning coolness. I chose getting up.
I had a cup of coffee. The bad ass idea went across my mind. A bad ass has to get up early if she wants to do a bad ass thing. I did a meditation on physical well being. I felt much better. I felt like I just needed to be easy about it. I grabbed my hydro pack out of the refrigerator and made it out the door by 5 am.
I had planned to complete the marathon in two parts. First running from my front door and then going to a park with many trees during the hotter part. The first part went super well. It went so well that I extended it to 18.3 miles before getting back to home base. It was mostly cloudy and I felt appreciation that such a cool morning had been given to me. 
When I got home, it was still cloudy and I had to decide where to complete the run. To go back out from my house or go to the park. I thought about how clouds can suddenly vanish and I thought about how much easier it is to run in the shade. I picked the shade. So I hopped in my car and drove the two miles to the park. Good choice. The clouds did disappear and by the time I had finished off the final eight miles, it was 87F. Course map (the straight line from green dot to hash mark is in the car, but not included in miles):
What surprised me however was that my feet and legs didn\’t reach any devastating level of pain. For the run, I had plenty of emotional momentum to keep going, but also, I wasn\’t in trouble with blisters. I didn\’t bonk.My feet didn\’t hurt. My hip didn\’t hurt. It was amazing. It has been a long time since I have felt so in the zone for a long distance effort. 
The Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee is now complete. I will finish in roughly 1,590th place of 20,000. I feel like a bad ass.
I have the corona virus to thank for my amazing athletic feats of the past 3 months. Without corona there wouldn\’t be these virtual races. Actually, the corona virus has been very good to me. Everything about me is thriving at the moment. My mode of existence has shifted. There are many people who are doing amazing things during this corona virus time. Not everybody is worried about sickness. Just look around you and you will see them.
Stay tuned. I have another virtual race coming in two weeks. It includes a 50k race which has to be done in one effort. 

Letter 5/5/2020 – last day of corona-cation

I have been participating in \”stay at home\” for 47 days. Tomorrow that ends as I return to my part time job. I accomplished what I came here to do, that is run, lift weights, reflect, write, get ready for the new normal. I believe the new normal is ready to debut.

The new normal is to wear a new article of clothing: the face mask. To continue to virtually plod across Tennessee. To continue with my simple life style. To continue to improve my conscious contact with that delicious inner consciousness. I have life. I love planet earth. I\’m learning to love others more and more. I appreciate many many more things. I have the ability to choose feeling good about myself. I have the awareness of when my thoughts are resistant and not helping me live in joy. I feel like I\’ve given up a life of complaining or resenting. I believe my life is accomplishing it\’s intended purpose when I choose to feel good about my existence, and ignore the little ego voice thinking I should have accomplished something great. I have tremendous well-being. So much well being than others can\’t understand it, though for me it is normal.

During this corona-cation, I learned how to bake potatoes in the micro-wave. I\’ve returned to my childhood love of drinking cold milk right from the jug. I have a new 100 mile belt buckle.

Either a person gets sick or they don\’t. My mother had cancer three times and attempted suicide twice and never got sober. I have lived totally on the other side of these coins. Sober, healthy, enjoying my ride through planet earth. There were and are a tremendous number of choices and going along with the choices that bring about the joy ride through planet earth. I guess I\’ve been doing it.

I have a future.

Today\’s run:

Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee progress: up to mile 69 of 622:

Here is the whole course map:

Letter 5/3/2020

It is mid-day on  Sunday. I finished a magnificent 10 mile run, of decent pace, in a nearby park. Now, I am ready to do some deep work for an hour or so. I have been pretty much alone for 45 days, but return to work in 3 days.

At the start of this rest period from society, I had a vision of spending lots of time each morning reading spiritual material, looking out my back window, pondering deep thought, running lots of miles and lifting weights. The corona virus is only an indirect actor in my reality. Well being and ongoing fitness are whats really on my mind. That is pretty much what has been happening.

A few days, I had a moment of conscious alignment with my inner being, or enlightenment as some would say. I finalized my Do Not Resuscitate document, and immediately went for a walk. The day was a beautiful spring day filled with flowering trees, green grass and blue sky. The exact scenery which I love about Missouri. I thought, \”I might be living my final few days on planet earth.\” And, \”I love planet earth.\” And in that moment, I knew that my entire life had been joyful. I mean entire. Even the seemingly difficult periods were joyful. There was never a time when my life had not been joy. It was the first time that I ever whole-heartedly and truthfully loved plant earth and how good it has been for me to be here. It was as if my life had been one big fun ride down a slide. And if I left planet earth it would only to be to run around to the top of the slide in order to take the ride again. This doesn\’t mean that I am planning on dying. It means that for the first time, I love my life.

Will I be different after 7 weeks of solitude? I won\’t know until I got out and see. Other than work, I don\’t know when I will re-engage socially.

My plan for the future is: Continue to participate in receiving Abraham Now (19 hours of 40 done at the moment); to re-join Starbucks; to continue to plod virtually across Tennessee. I\’m at mile 41 of 622, just past Memphis.

And practice joy. Well being is in the mind of the believer. I certainly have plenty of that.

Letter 4/28/2020

A beautiful sunny day here. I ran really well in Parkville.

I wore a buff for the first time in order to have a flexible face covering option for passing people on a trail. I admit that it doesn\’t seem necessary, except for the occasional group of people who don\’t practice social distancing. I did make a good example and discovered that it is not that annoying to pull it up when you pass people. I think that if I ever go in another real race, having a mask option and a hand cleaning option will be necessary.

Speaking of races. I\’ve entered another virtual race. Great Virtual race across Tennessee. Virtual races would seem stupid in any other year than this one. But, the races I\’ve entered so far offer benefits I won\’t be able to get in a normal year. Like the Aravaipa race offered a cool belt buckle. The race across Tennessee makes sense if you follow ultra running and have heard about the Vol State race or Laz Lake. Vol State race won\’t be happening this year, but I couldn\’t do it anyway. It is too hard for me to actually run across Tennessee in the given time frame. But I\’m happy to focus my running on getting the miles in over 4 months. And getting a t-shirt that won\’t ever be available again. Only 4684 participants so far.

I have been taking good advantage of my corona-cation. I totally appreciate the gifts given.

Letter 4/26/20

Today was a beautiful sunny day. Finally, KC is warming up. It was only 9 days ago, at the start of my 100 mile run that it was 27F wind chill outside.

I decided to take my run on a bike path that goes through a forest so I could listen to the birds. We have a lot of birds. So I loaded up my hydro-pak and off I went. It is 6.6 miles to where I turned around. On the day, I got 13.3 miles, all jogging. No walking.

The reason I am mentioning this is because of the satisfaction I feel about it. The satisfaction about a run well done is within me. It wasn\’t a half marathon race where I won a medal. It was pretty slow paced. It wasn\’t a training run for any particular race. I did it because I felt like it. But I feel good within me that I did it. To jog for 2:45 was satisfying.

Other things that happened today. 2 chores got done. 2 phone calls to friends. Via zoom, I attended an AA meeting in Texas where I saw old friends. I continued to read that difficult book I have sitting on my kitchen table. I spent 30 minutes lifting weights. I made myself an actual meal for supper.

Only about one week left to my corona-cation. I wonder how nearly 2 months of solitude have changed me. Or maybe they haven\’t changed me. Other than return to work, I don\’t know what else I\’ll be willing to participate in socially. Some people do not take care of themselves and therefore are a danger to those around them. One thing for sure, my physical fitness has improved since I\’ve had more time for working out. I think I have come to enjoy myself more because there is less comparison of myself to worldly expectations. I appreciate almost everything.

Prayer Miles

Day 3 of Aravaipa Strong virtual 10 day race. I\’m going for 100 miles and a belt buckle. As day 3 comes to a close, I have 62.9 miles. Tomorrow will be a shorter day.

I haven\’t been to work or any fellowship meetings since. March 18, a little over a month ago. The people I see are those who use the trails or those in grocery stores. I have had about 5 telephone conversations. I have attended to 13 hours of Abraham Now. Since March 18, I have run 384 miles. You can see that the virtual race is only a melding in to miles I was going to do anyway.

I have for most of my life been a solitary, but never has the needle been closer to 100% for so many days. Never have I shut off the alarm clock for that many days. There has been hours of reflection on my life and my spiritual connection. Contemplative prayer and running are obvious threads running through my entire life. Here in isolation, the two threads entwine, back and forth. My isolation is not about staying busy but about existing as being and relishing how bare my consciousness can be. Who I really am becomes more and more obvious, but also has fewer words with which to explain it. Fewer words because my place in society is gone. There is no mirror. No position.

I watch my thoughts from the moment of awakening to sleep. I watch my thoughts as I run.

This morning, I didn\’t know what I was going to do or where I was going to do it. But I thought I would like to do prayer miles. Prayer miles are those miles done in contemplation. I chose a long bike path through a forest, strapped on my hydro-pak, and disappeared down the trail for 3 hours. Came home. Ate. Disappeared onto another bike path for two hours.

My life consists of many many prayer miles. All of my activities, working or otherwise, are prayer miles.

I\’ve changed during this period. I rediscovered the joy of drinking cold milk right from the gallon jug. Said good-bye to soy milk.