Enough with this fucking demon doll!!!

I love horror movies. I always have, since I was a small girl and became fascinated with vampires, werewolves, ghosts and Frankenstein’s monster. I read The Shining at age nine. My favorite movie around the same time was Jaws. My husband hates horror movies (and roller coasters or other thrill rides), which I guess I understand. But it’s funny because he never has nightmares and I do all the time. He startles really easily, which would be funny except… Ok, it’s funny and I’m not a nice wife.

IMG_3352.JPGOne of the scariest movie scenes I’ve seen was in the movie Poltergeist. The clown doll that hid under the boy’s bed (the scene when the ghostbuster dude ripped his face off is up there too, along with the entire first Nightmare on Elm Street film). I’d never been afraid of stuffed animals or other toys before — until Poltergeist. And I was a young teen at the time, so suddenly becoming afraid of inanimate things was sort of silly at that point. Of course, I had long been afraid of things hiding under my bed. I wouldn’t set my feet on the floor in my room at night until I turned on the bedside table lamp — if I got brave enough to reach out to turn on said light. In fact, I was just thinking about this old fear last night, when I woke up to remove the heating pad and unplug it from the extension cord next to my bedside table. I marveled that I could reach down in the dark and not fear some under-bed-dwelling creature grabbing my extended arm and dragging me to my doom.

Yes, I’m 44 years old. And, yes, it’s sort of pathetic. But progress!

IMG_3351.JPGFor the past two months, the TV has been running commercials for the upcoming release of the movie Annabelle, which is a horror flick prequel for The Conjuring movie. The movie features some possessed doll, and I have to say PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT’S HOLY (so not religious, lol), ENOUGH WITH THE FRIGGIN CREEPY DOLL!!!!

I feel like that movie’s advertising is on twenty times per show. I can’t get away from it. A few nights ago, that doll’s evil face flashed before my eyes as I was trying to fall asleep and I had to consciously awaken myself to talk myself out of having nightmares about the damn thing.

I don’t believe in the supernatural despite my affection for horror movies, superheroes and most of the shows on the CW. I don’t believe in angels or god or magic. I wish I did. In many ways, I was less afraid when I did believe those things existed.

Except I do not want to believe in possessed ugly dolls.

My mother has a doll collection. Personally, I think she wanted dolls, not real live children. I find their vacant faces, constricting clothing and painted lips weird without them being animated by an evil spirit.

A few years ago, when I was still in contact with my parents, my son had to sleep in the dolls’ room. I felt terrible for the kid. He slept on the floor rather than the bed so that he was not at eye level with any of them on the shelves. He survived, but thinks the whole doll-room thing is deeply disturbing.

I don’t think any of those dolls would be brave enough to hop out of their places and run amok in my mother’s house. The only doll stupid enough to pull that stunt was me. Although she might forgive them if they strangled me in my sleep. So long as they knew to get back in their spots with nary a wrinkled apron or speck of dust before anyone noticed. Appearances, people.

To some degree, I think my interest in horror films is an effort on my part to understand and protect myself from the much more real evil force in my life. I never did figure out my mother. I’ve moved on, gotten sober, taken on a hobby I love and that is good for me. I have a good marriage and have lovely people in my life.

But that stupid Annabelle doll? Ugh. She reminds me too much of things I want to escape. A thing that looks perfect and pretty but is actually rotten on the inside, waiting to get you when you are vulnerable. I can’t wait for that movie commercial to quit running.

And now, I need to purge the above photo from my iPad cuz it’s freaking me out being in my photo album. Maybe I believe in hauntings after all ;)

One Month to Baystate

Eek! I’m trying hard to not focus on the actual race because I’m trying this thing where I’m not making my self-worth dependent on the outcome of the race.

I’m thrilled that my hip has decided to play nice. Training has been going well the last few weeks and I hate to jinx it with pressure. Honestly, a part of me wishes there was no race, just the training. I’m so mean to myself mentally when I race, and the experience isn’t fun. The races I’ve had fun during were those I wasn’t “racing” — and many of those ended up accidental PRs. If I’m relaxed and happy to be running, my performance follows. I still haven’t mastered trusting my training, so I’m trying to not think about it and just try to relax and enjoy the run.

Today was a Yasso 800 workout, and I hit every interval feeling awesome. I feel energized right now, three hours later, despite the work. I ran the easy parts easier than I have when doing Yassos in the past, and I think it made a big difference overall. I’ve definitely slowed down my warm up miles this cycle, and I think it’s done good things for my conditioning, even when it’s mentally hard for me to see 9 minute miles and not feel like I’m going too slow.

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I’ve got the rungries big time. Tonight is leftovers of Fusilli alla Crazy Bastard, which is a Mario Batali recipe with beet greens, roasted cherry tomatoes and goat cheese. We make it with double the greens and tomatoes. My husband made a gigantic bowl of it yesterday, and I’m more than happy to eat it again tonight. Plus I like saying the name of the dish.

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Bethany’s English Channel Swim Story

IMG_3311.JPGI thought I’d link to my friend Bethany’s blog for her re-telling of her English Channel swim. I tend to blank out a lot when I run, so her clarity during events always amazes me. She’s one of the most mindful people I know.

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

A few details about the Channel swim:

– The swimmers have to jump off their officially captained boat (with official observer) and swim to the beach in England, get fully out of the water and signal back that the swim is to commence. In this case, Bethany took off from Shakespeare Beach in Dover. In her first post, you can see me in the distant background standing on the beach as Bethany swims to it, photographed from the boat. I took photos of Bethany from beachside (two of which I’ve posted here).

– To be considered an official Channel crossing, you can’t wear a wetsuit. The waters were something like in the 50s. I’d die after about 20 minutes. Crazy shit, that.

– The swimmer cannot be touched by another person in any way during the course of the swim and the swimmer cannot hold onto the boat or any other floatation device during the swim. The crew tosses bottles of feed to the swimmer throughout. In the last post, she mentions my husband, David, swimming behind her in the final moments. He was careful to keep his distance from her so as to not disqualify her swim by accidentally touching her. The captain had requested he follow her to the beach in France because it was dark and she’d been swimming so long, so there was concern about getting her back to the boat as well as how hard it would be for her to walk on land after nearly 18 hours of swimming.

– I mentioned in an earlier post that she swam about 41 miles. If the tides hadn’t shifted, it would’ve been closer to the 26 miles my husband swam when he crossed last year. Bethany’s attitude of “whatever” when she realized she missed the landing on the cap (the cap being Cap Nez Gris on the coast of France, south of Calais) is hugely inspirational to me. As a runner, I can’t imagine being that close to the finish, only to be told I’d have to keep going another 3 hours.

Next time I feel pukey during a race, I hope I remember poor Bethany soldiering through her fantastic feat. I’m officially a big, fat wimp compared to my badass friend.

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Vacation Recovery

We made it home last night. We had a fantastic trip, but I was ready to sleep in my own bed.

Now we have to recuperate from vacation. I dread unpacking for some reason. We didn’t really buy anything so it’s mostly laundry.

I ran a ton while away, which was great. My last run was 7 miles in London’s Hyde Park. It was fabulous. I could’ve run forever.

I’m trying to catch up with all the blogs. Internet was sllllloooooowwww even once I got to the cities. Plus I was too spent from the busy days to be online, which is a good thing.

One interesting thing about reading blogs via Feedly was that if I just read the feed, I could fairly quickly read most blog posts. But any blog that required me to click through to read the full post hung up my connection forever. So there were many blogs I simply didn’t get to because of that added step. Something bloggers might want to consider when they set up their blogs that way. I guess I’ve never been a fan of when blogs do that anyway, but this was an added nuisance. /rant

I have a bazillion pictures and I do want to do a post on the Paris Running Tour that we took (a huge highlight of the trip), but I’ll just leave the post for now with a couple photos until I can catch my breath.

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London to Paris then Back

We’re on the move. We left Capel-Le-Ferne yesterday and spent last night in London. Had a fantastic Indian dinner. We’re checking some of our luggage at Heathrow and pitching the rental car after we spend a few hours at Stonehenge. Then this afternoon we take the train to Paris for a few days. This morning my husband and I ran an easy 4.1 miles in London. It was really energizing. For me. Can’t speak for my husband although I was impressed and pleased he’s wanted to run with me at all.

I’m super excited about tomorrow because my husband and I are doing a running tour of Paris in the morning. The theme is the French Revolution. I have a long run on my schedule, and the tour is approximately 13 miles. I’ll just need to do another 4-8 on my own after. I can’t wait!

Chicken Kadai from dinner last night
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