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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Georgia On Her Mind

I miss Jen "Jenkins"! No, that's not her real last name. That's the name I thought was hers for way too long, and although I know her real last name, I prefer Jenkins. Jen Jenkins.

To the Southwest of this blog entry is a picture of her with myself, Anthony, and Pooja.

Jen has gone to Georgia - The Country - to work with Medecins Sans Frontier (anyone have spell check in French?), otherwise known as Doctors Without Borders, for 6 months. Bra-Vo Jen!

Jen, we will miss you. However, Jen has left us with something, besides her amazing ability to dress funky while running (Fashionista Runner Girl is her Super Hero persona). She started a BLOG in Georgia - The Country - about her runs, her experiences, hopefully her new cuisine that we can all enjoy in the place of her dazzling in person self.

Become a Follower and enjoy Jen's unique style up to the moment!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Congrats Runners in Queens Half Today

I can't believe that people would travel to Queens for a reason other than the great food (see Sripraphai in Woodside). I, myself, wouldn't...subways on the weekend, et al...

Two of our runners, one from Waverly, one from Columbus, ran, and ran hard!

Pooja Pandit, a senior at NYU and running her first NYC Marathon this year, ran it in 2:06:08, running a 9:37 pace. Not too shabby.

South African Gary Berchowitz, new to Team Joe's Upper West Side runs, ran like the Dickens in 1:41:10 at a 7:43 pace.

Former Team Joe member, and current Central Park Track member (yes, it smarts) Kristine Riisberg, ran in 1:39:39, at a 7:36 pace.

Meanwhile, our new 10 a.m. time was a lovely gift of Autumn. We ran a gorgeous 6 mile route today on the bridal path in Central Park, and finished with a cortado and a visit from Baby Sally Rubinstein, who enjoyed some pear.

I hope to see you all (200 of you) next weekend. 

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I love the Fall. No, not the Fall Of Man, because that was bad(except for all the knowledge and the apples)... but let's not get the two confused. I am talking about the cool temperatures, the sweaters and jeans, the change in color of the trees, the apples, the stews (why does it always come to food with me?), Hallowe'en and tiny masked monsters asking for candy. 

But best of all, the Team Joe Saturday and Sunday runs will be moved back to 10 a.m.!

You are welcome.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

I came, I ate, I ran on treadmill in hotel...

Hi friends,

I am sorry I broke my promise to you, my readers, that I would write from HK. This will be my only post from here. I hope I didn't inconvenience you too much, as I know all 25 of you really look forward to me timely cutting-edge reports on the world of running and eating. Heehee.

It has been a whirlwind tour here in formerly-Brittish HK. Five days here felt like months because it is so transporting from what I am used to in NYC. In some ways, HK is so much like NYC: the massive highrises lined up neck and neck, the hordes of busy people, the reckless taxis. But nestled uncomfortably in every spare inch of room are old-school Chinese ways and means: tiny restaurants in alleys, giant outdoor markets hawking all sorts of goods. Kind of exactly like NYC, but in a Sci-Fi parallel universe sort of way. It reminded me of the novel Cloud Atlas, although that's a bit esoteric.

Here are a few things I noticed here in HK. 1. People wear deodorant. That was great. 2. Subways are so clean you could eat off them..if it weren't for the swine flu. 3. Phones work on subways, but no one talks on them; neither on the subways or on the phones on subways. 4. Customer service is off-the-charts amazing. It makes Joe employees seem like Hell's Angels gang members. Sorry guys, you're really great. 5. People eat constantly here, but are tiny tiny. That one just hurts. 6. The city is so much more technologically advanced and organized than NY. The Octopus card can be used on every mode of transport, minus cabs, and for buying things in stores. It's more amazing than it sounds. 7. People just seem happy here..especially the ex-pats from all over who get paid well and live like kings. 8. The pasttime people love the most, besides eating, is shopping. They are mad for it and have super-sized, icy-cold luxury malls all over the city. 9. HK is an island that is mostly a small mountain, and to get up and down into different neighborhoods there is a series of outdoor escalators that go all the way up, but let people off at each street. Wild!

A few things I explored here in HK were: The Big Buddha on Lantau Island at a Buddhist monastery where we finished the tour with a vegetarian meal; a cooking class for professionals where I was the only student and learned to cook "restaurant-style Shanghai cooking", mostly by deep frying in a wok, recipes I will never attempt at home; The History Museum, which is incredible and has the only buildings (in exhibit) that look at all like "Old China"; a meal in a real HK neighborhood with Anthony's relatives where I was the only western person there - maybe ever; general walking and drifting in different neighborhood soaking up local culture, which includes mostly shopping and eating.

As for running, tempertures being in the 90s with at least 80% humidity, I used the hotel gym a few times. Tread mills aren't my favorite, but I was in a pinch. I did see quite a few runners in the heat of the day, and was surprised to find out through a friend of Anthony's who lives and runs here, that there is a pretty large running community and races all the time starting in October.

That was just a taste of what I discovered in HK. I really kind of miss my own little city-island, filthy and disorganized as it now seems, and can't wait to start running outside again, and with my wonderful little team.

See you next Saturday at Waverly!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Gonzales Cantata

I (Mary Thorne) sing the title role of Alberto Gonzales in The Gonzales Cantata on the Philadelphia Fringe Festival.

Miss America meets PDQ Bach on Capitol Hill in this choral work by Melissa Dunphy with a libretto taken directly from the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings of former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Thirty performers in concert present one of the most dramatic moments in modern US politics—with genders reversed.

Other singers include: Jessica Lennick as Patrick Leahy, Danya Katok as Arlen Specter, Julia Mintzer as Orrin Hatch.

Friday, September 4th, 7pm
Saturday, September 5th, 7pm
Sunday, September 6th, 2pm

The Rotunda, 4014 Walnut Street, Philadelphia

And find us on the Wall Street Journal Law Blog. That's me singing in the clip at the bottom!


Not that Philadelphia compares with Hong Kong (or business class or a diamond ring), but I thought I would share my Rocky moments.

I have been rehearsing here in Philly for a few weeks (see next posting for performance details) and running in Philly. I'm staying a couple miles from Fairmount Park and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, thus the Rocky reference (yes, I ran the steps).

On my run I pass the Eastern State Penitentiary, which I thought might be in a shady neighborhood until I learned that Eastern State is now a tourist destination. Opened in 1829, Eastern State Penitentiary was the first modern building in America. Imagine, prisoners had central heating and running water when Andrew Jackson still had chamber pots in the White House!

Eastern State Penitentiary provides some reflection for citizens on our current prison system. Initially built to house 250 inmates in their own private cells, when it closed in 1971, Eastern State held 1,700.

On way to HK!

Am sitting in the Brittish Airways First and Business Class lounge. Nice. I could get used to this. Hanging out with Tracy Morgan...well, not so much hanging with, but looking at from afar. Same diff.

They are pre-boarding Business class, but I don't want to be a showoff, as I pass the commoners on my way into my fancy cabin, complete with beds, servants, and gold-leaf covered dinnerware. Let's face it, I'm a mench.

I want to enjoy the Business Class experience for a few hours before I take an Ambien, but I am afraid I won't make it past lunch, after taking an extra strength Contac for my head cold. G-d, I love cold meds!

They just called Business Class in again...I guess I should go. Champagne and foot massages await me...but probably just in my drug-induced dreams...


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Off to Hong Kong

I'll be blogging from HK (you thought you were getting a break from me, but think again!) Don't know that I'll be running there, but I'll keep in touch.

Also journeying is our good friend and Team member Jen, Fashionista Runner. She's off on the 8th  to Georgia - the country - with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) for a 6 month stint of goodness. I will miss her very much! Au revoir.

Exhausted and can't remember what I packed. Kind of threw everything in suitcase, as usual. Taking with me a budding head cold, which I will mask with extra strength Sudafed so that I won't be turned away from the airport with a Bird Flu or Swine Flu scare.

Happily I'll be traveling Business Class (thank you miles and Anthony), so that will be a "pleasure". I get to test drive those cool pseudo-beds, and the famous Seinfeld episode("More of Everything!")

Cheers mates! Next time you hear from me, I will be severely jetlagged...don't hold anything I may write against me.