June 25, 2010

The Weeklies #138

The Weekly Affliction. A packed calendar which included more meetings that you can shake a stick at, teaching two classes, and driving to West Virginia and back.

The Weekly Opinion. I just did a very quick survey of the answers you provided to the question I posed yesterday. Like the majority of those who responded, I am against the death penalty. For a lot of reason, none of which I'm going to weigh you down with early on a Friday morning. Thanks for providing your thoughts and insight.

The Weekly Canned Meat Product. I'm a vegetarian but I'm willing to make an exception for canned unicorn meat.

The Weekly Non-Canned Meat Product. Lion burger anyone?

The Weekly Read. Those of you who've read for a while know that I have a tiny crush on writer Lisa Lutz. Her Spellman novels are all kinds of smart and funny and awesome. The Spellmans Strike Again is no exception. Lutz pulls off a rare thing. Most series tend to get tired after a while. But four books in, Lutz's series is going strong and actually getting better.

The Weekly Music. Vuvuzelas everywhere!

The Weekly Schadenfreude. Poor Stanley McChrystal. An outstanding general who was unable to exercise good judgment and keep his mouth shut. McChrystal managed to orchestrate his own ousting by trash-talking the President, the Vice President and a handfull of others as reporters followed him around - with his approval - for a month.

The Weekly Question From Mia. When you were a kid, did you play sports? What was your favorite?

Posted by Chris at June 25, 2010 7:26 AM

Miabean, until around 7th grade, I was the second tallest girl in my class. Unfortunately I never grew another inch and now I've shrunk.

I played a little basketball, volleyball, and softball. I ran the 440. No speed, but decent staying power. I didn't do any of this terribly well but probably I was best at softball as long as I stayed out in right field (watching the dandelions grow). Ask your daddy if he knows that song. It's funny and it's done by an old group who sang many kids' songs. (Chris - it's PP&M). Anyhow, I was a fair left handed hitter which gave me an advantage against pitchers who had never seen one.

I think your swimming is quite wonderful. Hope your mom, dad, brother and you have a fantastic weekend.

Posted by: Ann Elizabeth Adams at June 25, 2010 7:41 AM

I lack the necessary eye to hand coordination to be successful at any type of sport that involves getting a ball or something into something else. Combine that with attending a catholic school from 1st through 8th grades with no gym hence no gym classes AND along with my twin sister was the smallest girl in the class - there wasn't much hope.
HOWEVER, I was a stellar cheerleader! Big mouth, peppy personality, decent roundoff and killer russian jump. 11 points from a perfect try out score my junior year and captain my senior year.
And given the opportunity, I wouldn't change a thing.

Posted by: NancyJ at June 25, 2010 8:25 AM

Soccer, soccer and more soccer! Loved to play it then and love to watch it now no matter if it is my kids or the national team playing . Go USA!!

Posted by: Elizabeth at June 25, 2010 8:35 AM

Hi Mia! I started figure skating when I was in Third Grade.

Chris, I would have been shocked to find out you were pro death penalty. I suppose this is because you and I pretty much come down on the same side of the fence, politically speaking, for most issues. As well, I find the death penalty atrocious and don't really understand why anybody supports it.

Posted by: Heather at June 25, 2010 8:44 AM

Oh, how I love Lisa Lutz. She is my go-to recommendation for anyone who asks what I think they should read next.

Mia, I tried all sports when I was a kid, but my favorite was softball and that's the one I kept playing the longest. My favorite position was pitcher because that's what my dad played, but I also played catcher sometimes.

Posted by: Becky at June 25, 2010 8:49 AM

Mia, I ran track in jr high and high school... not so much the running, I guess, but I threw shot put and discus. Kinda fun! I was also a cheerleader (FIRE UP!!), and I played softball in Jr high. I still play softball now - and I love it!

On a totally un-related note - I just picked up the new Marshall Karp book at the library this morning. I might just have to leave work early to read it!

Posted by: Kim at June 25, 2010 9:03 AM

Hey Mia! I really liked sports as a kid and I participated in a few.
I was a gymnast for about 11 years, from age 7 to 18. It was really really fun and I still miss doing it everyday. I think it's great that my daughter likes to do it now.
I also played softball for a few years. It was hard for me because I wasn't good at it at first but I practiced a lot and then I got pretty good at it. It was fun when I was playing with my friends.
When I was 17 I joined the swim team at my high school. I was not a good swimmer and I wanted to get better. It was really fun! I still like to swim a lot.
I think my favorite was gymnastics. It was fun to practice and get better at it. I enjoyed seeing all the cool things my body could do and how strong it could be.
Have fun with your swimming! It looks like you really enjoy it and that's the best thing about sports, having a good time while you work hard!

Posted by: tulip at June 25, 2010 9:48 AM

Hi Mia!

Being from Canada, it is in our constitution that everyone must play hockey in the winter. I grew up in a town called North Bay which is about a 4 hour drive north of Toronto. The town is also known as the Gateway To The North.

The school near me had a huge paved schoolyard and every winter they flooded it to make 4 extremely large rinks. My friends and I would go to the bus station next door to put on our skates (and return throughout the day to warm up and have some hot chocolate) and then we would play hockey from morning until dark. There were always shovels beside the rinks and we would stop play periodically to shovel the snow that had fallen.

I miss those days now that I live in Toronto. But I got my wife skates last Christmas and we go down to Harbourfront and skate most weekends in the winter.

Posted by: Mike at June 25, 2010 9:57 AM

Mia-I danced most of my childhood which meant sports used the wrong muscles; however, I did play soccer for 6 seasons. I was the goalie.

Posted by: krush at June 25, 2010 10:28 AM

I was all about ballet and Barbie's. I took my "just say no to sports" stance at a very early age! ;)

Posted by: LaineyDid at June 25, 2010 10:39 AM

After 9 years, I think a change was probably in order in Afghanistan anyway.

I played baseball as a kid. My real sport was riding bikes though. All day everyday. :)

Posted by: Brad at June 25, 2010 11:31 AM


I was so uncoordianted, I could not even jump rope until I was 10. I did take clogging (a traditional southern type of tap) for several years.

I was always the one who took the longest to learn routines, etc. due to my lack of coordination.

I have always been more of a reader than anything,to be honest. I'm quite surprised I don't work in publishing.

Have a good weekend.

Posted by: debb at June 25, 2010 11:33 AM

I love Lisa Lutz'z books too!

Mia - I was a swimmer! I swam competitively for 10 years... and loved it! I started on a summer-league team for a few years, then was on a year-round team along with the summer team, and then for 3 years, I was on my summer, my year-round and my high school team!

Posted by: Sue R at June 25, 2010 12:13 PM

Because you talked about her, I found the first Lisa Lutz book while traveling somewhere last year, at an airport bookstore. Kept me happily entertained for the rest of my trip. I have gotten distracted by life and didn't continue to read the series, so thanks for the reminder. And I am a little surprised by General McChrystal's faux pas. It is so not the military way to speak out against a superior of any sort.

Posted by: MidLifeMama at June 25, 2010 12:23 PM

Not too sure if it's a sport, but god, did I ever love dodgeball. I used to find it so thrilling. I almost wish I could join an adult dodgeball league.

Posted by: Laura at June 25, 2010 1:50 PM

First, to answer Mia's question: Not really. I swam a lot when I was a little kid and that's about it. I never liked to sweat much.

Second, for Chris a thank you. You mentioned The Rabbit Factory last week and I borrowed it from the library the next day. I'm about 1/3 into it and I love it. I've put the next one on hold at the library.

Also, I also read the first Lutz-Spellman novel and loved that as well. I need to get the rest of those, too.

Posted by: jen at June 25, 2010 2:12 PM

I played all kinds of sports when I was younger.
Soccer and Field Hockey were my favorites :)

Posted by: Rose @Dozenroses13 at June 25, 2010 2:49 PM



I liked swimming and diving off a diving board a lot. Those were my favorites. I liked kickball and four-square. I liked playing baseball with the boys in my school, too. I liked rollerskating in gym class.


Posted by: alektra at June 25, 2010 3:45 PM

Hi Mia :D

I didn't play any sports when I was younger, but I did take dance classes for 12 years! I did tumbling (which eventually turned into gymnastics when I got older), tap (flats and high heels!), jazz, baton, ballet, and then pointe. I did this from when I was in elementary school until I was 18. After I graduated high school I even tried Irish Step Dancing. It's very hard...you have to be nimble and not flail your body around at the same time. After that I took martial arts - Aikido, Kempo, JuJutsu, and Bo staff and Sai. As of now, I play a sport called roller derby - It's lots of fun and very competitive!! Keep up your good work with swimming!! You look like you are having loads of fun and that is what matters most!!

Have a super weekend Cactus-Fish family!! :D

Posted by: Michelle at June 25, 2010 3:55 PM

Vuvuzela sounds dirty to me!

Mia - When I was a little girl I played T-Ball and the Baseball. I was the only girl on my team for YEARS and loved it. When I was 10 I switched to dance (which I did for 8 years), Jazz and Ballet were my favorite and I even got to wear pointe shoes!

Posted by: js at June 25, 2010 8:36 PM

Dear Mia,
I started swim lessons before I could walk. I swam on a swim team from the age of 5 until I was 12. I quit swimming because I lost my hearing and was not aware that I didnt have to! My favorite stroke still is the butterfly stroke!
I also played volleyball, softball, and basketball (even though I am short!) but swimming was ALWAYS MY FAVORITE!!
Cheryl in St. Louis

Posted by: Cheryl at June 26, 2010 1:12 AM

I played volleyball, and I did a lot of horseback riding!

Posted by: Heather at June 26, 2010 4:06 AM

I played soccer when I was a kid, 1st grade I think. But that was it. I remember it being fun, in that bunch of little kids chasing a ball all over the place in random directions way. I remember it being a team of boys and girls, and my mom along with my friend Brian's mom being the team moms.

The only thing I really remember about anyone or anything to do with it was Brian's mom never developed an immunity to the chicken pox, and in the time my mom knew her and kept in contact (until I was 10 or 12) she got the chicken pox four or five times.

Posted by: Debra at June 26, 2010 8:02 AM

I'll answer Mia's question....basketball, track and field and competitive swimming....I can barely make it up the stairs nowadays!

Posted by: Lujza at June 26, 2010 11:50 PM

I played softball for a minute, we lost every game despite being called The Red Hots.

I loved to play volleyball in gym and with friends and family. :)

No lion burger for me, please. Cats are my kids.

Posted by: Poppy at June 27, 2010 12:43 PM

I was on the gymnastics team in High School. My favorite thing was the uneven parallel bars!

Posted by: Maribeth at June 27, 2010 4:42 PM