Race Report: Tri 4 Fun, Pleasanton, CA 6/21/97

The first day of summer is my favorite day of the year. I celebrated the solstice by completing my first-ever triathlon. Let me tell you, it was fantastic!

The tri fell into the “sprint” classification: 400m swim (in a lake), 10.5 mile bike, 3 mile run.

The promo literature said that the first wave would leave the shore at 7:00 sharp. Unfortunately, the City of Pleasanton had changed its rules regarding bike-course volunteers, which left the RD scrambling for a few more over-18 course volunteers. The airhorn finally blew at 7:40 a.m.

I was in the middle of the pack. The open-water start was one of my two biggest fears about the race — I’ve read stories on the net about getting kicked in the face by vigorous swimmers. All went well, though, and even though my goggles weren’t prescription I was able to see both orange buoys. The water was really warm — no wetsuit required (good thing since I don’t have one :-).

I should have warmed up with a few laps first, because by the time I was warmed up, I only had 100m left to swim! Finished the swim, grabbed my glasses from Kevin (who got up at 4:30 that morning *and* timed all my splits for me, what a guy) and ran to my bike.

My transition was slow — 10 minutes! Wet sunglasses were the culprit. They’re Bolle shades with a prescription insert — two sets of glasses to wipe down! By the time I dried them, washed my feet and got set for the bike leg, my heart rate had dropped a bit. I climbed up the hill out of the park and thanked an encouraging volunteer.

Alex, my roommate, had swapped the knobby tires on my hybrid with some new road tires, and inflated them to 90 p.s.i. My other fear about the race was that I’d get a flat — I don’t think I’ve changed a flat tire more than once in my life. My tires were just fine, though. The ride felt really short — the promo literature billed it as a 12 mile bike but a friend’s computer clocked it at 10.5. Anyway, without the knobby tires to slow me down, it felt more like six miles, tops. Alex had also lent me his toe cages and they helped considerably.

At the end of the bike I rode back down to the park, got my feet out of my toe cages and promptly fell over. No blood, OK I’m fine, ran to rack my bike and don my singlet (with my race number, which happened to be 13, great…).

I’d stayed really well-hydrated on the bike so I passed the first aid station. The run course was a modified figure-eight. We ran up a hill to get to the center of the “8”, then made 3 “S” loops and ran down the hill, through the park to get to the finish line. I stopped at the aid station twice (it was in the center of the 8), and the second time I stopped some speed demon was right on my tail so I tried to dodge between two signs to get out of his way, slamming my chest into the corner of a sign in the process. Jeez…

The run was harder than my workout trials had been — probably because it was fairly hilly (my neighborhood is rather flat). I was pleased to run down the final hill, and kicked it into gear to sprint to a 1:27:27 finish.

Things that weren’t so great:

* Someone stole the high-end raffle prizes from the transition area the night before the race. 🙁

* The guy who barreled nearly into me at the aid station

* My 10 minute swim-to-bike transition time

Things that were great:

* The volunteers!

* The non-competitive aspect — it was a great choice for a first tri

* My road tires

* Coming in under my goal time

There are two more Tri For Fun races this summer, and then in September they hold a “Tri For Real”.

Four minutes after crossing the finish line, I looked at Kevin and happily exclaimed “I want to do it *again*!”

Here are my split times:

Start of swim: 0:00

End of swim: 7:42

Start of bike race: 7:52

End of bike race: 54:15

Start of run: 55:30

End of run: 1:27:27


The cat is still missing. I’m thinking that she wandered off and someone adopted her. The alternatives are too painful to even consider. As a result, I didn’t sleep too much last week.

I’m haunting the Humane Societies and Sabrina helped me put up some “lost cat” posters. She even charmed the manager of Safeway into allowing her to post one near the supermarket entrance. She’s French, so her charm is genetic.

Mike sent me an e-mail for an OJ update. The subject line was “Meow”. It made me cry. Then, last week, he drove to San Carlos to see if maybe she’d returned to my old apartment.

Could I even *ask* for a better ex-boyfriend?


One fish did end up surviving the mass suicide. He’s in negotiations with 20/20 to tell his story. I keep waiting for him to post a “Fish Gate” web site.


Work is going pretty well. cyberPAGE is an incredible product and blows doors off the competition. It’s a lot of fun to market because it’s so truly great. So buy it! I have a performance review coming up. 🙂


Dragon got a new Newton — I think it was a birthday present to himself. It’s enormous. I took him to Barley and Hopps for his birthday and as we walked towards the restaurant he tried to put the Newton in his back pocket. I laughed at him. He insisted it would fit. I insisted it would make him look like he had a square, flat ass. He took it out of his pocket.


I was driving down 101 on my way to meet a new net.friend when I realized that the car broken down on the side of the highway belonged to my buddy Mike (not the ex-boyfriend, though that’s how I met him). I got off at Shoreline and got back on the freeway at Middlefield, but that was too far so I had to get back on 101 (going north this time), got off at Rengstorff, got back on and stopped 25 yards behind Mike.

His sidewall was ruined. He’d passed a wreck in Menlo Park and figured that he ran over some of the debris. He had his tools with him and had taken off the ruined tire when his jack broke. I let him use my cell phone. He gave me a smoke, told me to apologize to the person I was meeting, and we caught up a bit while he was on hold with AAA roadside assistance.


Michelle looked at me yesterday. “Are you making that noise or is it a Web page you’re on?”

I had no idea what she was talking about, so I blamed the noise on my computer.

She called me on it again today. Apparently, I make this clicking noise by snapping my tongue against the roof of my mouth. Apparently, I do this every half hour. Apparently, it’s a totally unconscious movement on my part.

I told her to call me on it whenever she notices me doing it.

Sadly, that’s not the most annoying thing I do without realizing it. Occasionally, when I’m on stage acting in a play, I’ll mouth all the other actors’ lines.

Really! Co-actors have hit me backstage for it.


You go, girl

I called Kevin (actually, his answering machine) on Friday night and announced “Kevin, you’re dating a jock.”

It was with very good reason. A month or two ago I decided that I needed to do a triathlon. I was biking a lot at the time because I’d rear-ended someone and my truck was at the body shop for a month. CSAA (my insurance) will pay $15.00 of one’s rental car fee for 10 days, so rather than incur expense I traveled via bicycle.

It wasn’t too bad. I’m a recreational runner (actually ran competitively for Sun Microsystems until the team disbanded) and my bike is pretty cool. Plus, I live 1.1 miles from my job and probably five miles from church, and since lately those were the only places I needed to go on a regular basis, not having a car ended up being only a bit inconvenient rather than a huge tragedy.

Whenever I really needed to go somewhere (like to the Shane Co. to pick up my mom’s Mother’s Day gift) John drove me. Kevin saw a lot of Redwood City — he’d drive down for dates rather than me going to SF. He also saw the Lucky store in San Carlos and the Hollywood Video next door. 🙂

So between running and biking I figured I was up for a 400 meter swim/11 mile bike/3 mile run extravaganza. My buddy Chris took me to his pool and paced me through a 700 meter workout that was tiring yet strangely exhilarating.

I ended up joining the pool last Friday, and put my body through a ohmigawd-am-I-really-ready-for-this, pre-triathlon workout. Swam 500 meters, biked about 10 miles and ran 3.5 miles.

And *damn*, it felt incredible. I finished in less than two hours, had a blast, and was even able to sprint the final block.

When I was running a lot, Mike would call me his “bionic girlfriend.” I’m not quite there yet now, but I’ll finish this triathlon and maybe even *compete* in another one!

To keep myself motivated (and accountable), I’ll post a training log.

Hell, I’m not having sex, so I’ve got to do something to get my heart pounding and my body sweaty!


My cat’s been missing since Thursday and now all the fish are dead.

I don’t think there’s a correlation between the two occurrences. I think it’s just a really bad time to be a pet in the home of Alex and Lynn.

I’m pretty upset about the recent turn of events. OJ (originally named Odysseus Joseph, shortened to OJ when it was discovered that he was a she) came into my life as a street cat when I lived in crack-addled San Jose. She was tough and smart, real street-smart like. Her lean figure betrayed her often unsuccessful dumpster diving, but she kept her coat clean and shiny. I named her, adopted her, and got her spayed.

She’s disappeared before, but has always come back within 48 hours. While we both still lived in San Jose she was gone for a couple of days. I went into my housemate’s room, where he was watching TV, and asked if he’d seen OJ around.

He pointed to the television. “Yeah, your cat’s driving that Bronco with a shotgun to it’s head.”

My other housemate came in holding a small, round piece of paper. It said, “My name is Applesauce.”

He handed it to me. “Here, an alias for your cat.”

I guess after 3.5 years she’s finally gotten tired of all the jokes and has taken off for warmer, more humor-impaired climes. I combed the block for her on Friday and Saturday, and yesterday Kevin came over to help me scour the neighborhood.

We walked block after block. My voice started to give out. At one point I turned to him to apologize. “I’m sorry we have to walk so far to look for her.”

“Lynn, we can walk all night if you want.”


Oh, so anyway, I took half a day off work on Monday and went to the local humane societies. No sign of OJ, not in the cages or in the Found Pet files or (thank God) the DOA records. I called the vet to let them know she’s missing, and am hoping that the breakaway collar with her rabies vaccination tag with the vet’s phone number is still securely around her neck.

I got home from my humane society hunt and looked at the 40 gallon fish tank in our living room. All of the fish except one were dead. Some floated in the top corners, others had sunk to the bottom. All looked glassy-eyed and bloated.

Only two of the fish were mine. I’d had them for five years. They were feeder goldfish, the type you get at the pet store, 12 for a dollar. Julie, my then roommate, started the tank. My only condition was simple: I would not scoop dead fish out of the tank. I’d gone through that too often with my previous, softer-hearted-than-I roommate and would not do it again.

So the tank got started and a fish died daily. After about four died, Julie got tired of her chore and just let them sink. A while after that, the carcasses would dissolve, chewed apart by the survivors.

My neighbor Steve suggested we call our tank “Donner Lake.” We taped the Far Side cartoon depicting “The Donner Party Memorial Statue” to the tank — for those who haven’t seen it, it’s a foot between two pieces of bread.

This is turning out to be much sicker than I’d originally intended. Sorry.

I miss my kitty! And now the fish are gone. I feel like Job, and await the coming of the locusts.