Hey guys, Quinn David Furness here coming in HOT (pun intended) with an all new Beantown Blog post. No, I’m not as prolific with the blog as I once was, but hey, I really wanted that Euphoria Season 2 finale recap to marinate. I thought about doing a whole blog post about the This is Us series finale last month, but I don’t know, two TV reviews in a row, who am I, Roger Ebert? So let’s not do a whole separate post, but let’s pay a little tribute to the show that had us laughing, crying, and checking our watches to see how much time was left in the episode.
For anyone who’s never seen This is Us, welcome to my world. I knew it starred Sterling K Brown and a crockpot, but beyond that, I was clueless. So there I am thrown smack dab into the middle of the emotional final season. And if you don’t know anything about the way this show is structured, it is going to be absolutely mind-boggling. Did you know they do the show in multiple different time periods? Meaning we get to see 6 year old Sterling K Brown, 22 year SKB, 47 year old SKB, and so on and so forth. The crock pot does not age well, either. But here’s the big kicker: Mandy Moore, who in real life is still somehow only 38 (wasn’t Princess Diaries from like 1994??), portrays her character throughout all the time periods. So while you have a CGI Gary Coleman portraying the 12 year old Sterling, Sterling portraying the 40 year old Sterling, and Samuel L Jackson portraying the 73 year old Sterling, you’ve got Mandy doing all her own parts. Now look, from a paycheck perspective, it’s genius. None of her wealth is getting diluted to B list actors like Millie Bobby Brown or Susan Sarandon. But you’re telling me that I’m supposed to believe Mandy Moore can pull off a 75 year old woman dying of dementia? Mrs. Doubtfire was more believable. Anyways, I was so distracted by this absurdity that I couldn’t even tell you what else happened in the show. Also, I didn’t actually watch the final episode. Between the time travel and the main white guy being a total Josh Holloway wannabe, this was essentially the spiritual sequel to LOST, and if there was ever a show that didn’t need more air time, it’s LOST.
So back to June 14th here in Chicago. The heat index is currently 108 with about 60% humidity. Reminds me of Baltimore. It’s brutal. A lot of my Chicago folks aren’t used to this type of action. So as someone who has both lived in Chicago for multiple summers without AC (2014, 2019, and 2020), as well as someone who’s been to Orlando between February and November, I feel qualified to offer up some tips on how to stay cool during a Chicago heat wave. Read up!
If you are lucky enough to have air conditioning, this may be the time to use it. You’ll have to feel it out for yourself, but 108 is pretty hot. I don’t know what sort of twisted sense of macho man syndrome you think you have, or if you think it’s funny to tell the world “Hey it’s 108 and I’m not using my AC,” but stop being a little attention whore already and just turn on the AC.
Drink lots of water. Peeing every hour is preferable – If your pee is a darker shade of green, yellow, or red, you’re probably not drinking enough. If you don’t have running water, try smacking a fire hydrant with a comically large wrench and see if it bursts open. I think they did that in “Do the Right Thing.”
If you’re going to run outside, try to do it before 7am. I know I know, waking up at 5:30am on a Tuesday morning then working a full day sucks, but not as bad as heat exhaustion. If you do run in broad daylight with a heat index at 108, make sure you post a selfie on Instagram afterward so everyone knows you’re hardcore. What’s the point of running in that kind of misery if you don’t tell people about it?
Get creamed. Ice cream, I mean. But watch out – Thanks to supply chain issues, Joe Biden, and probably Russia, mini Blizzards at your local Dairy Queen (that’s a size smaller than Small for those who don’t know) might still cost $5. That’s crazy. When did DQ become the hangout for rich kids? You could get a 49c cone at McDonald’s back in 2014, and now this?
Ice baths. They’re not just for the pros anymore. The only problem is you’re going to need a lot of ice trays. I have 3, which is a good start. If you’re like me, you like to enjoy yourself too while you’re cooling down – Try finding the emoji ice cube maker my friend Amy got for me back in 2017. Really a hoot.
Jump in a lake. I don’t care which lake. I don’t want to just say “Lake Michigan” because my readers in Pakistan will have no idea what I’m talking about. Let me take this chance to say this to my friends in the Khyber Pass: مجھے نہیں معلوم کہ پاکستان میں کوئی اچھی جھیلیں ہیں یا نہیں، اس لیے کسی نقشے یا کسی اور چیز سے مشورہ کرنے کی کوشش کریں۔
Learn Urdu. Not only will you be able to easily and quickly know exactly what I just wrote, it will also be a welcome distraction from your face melting off.
Dip your toes in the ice machine at your local Dunkin. Those guys make minimum wage, and unless you encounter a really ambitious franchise owner, they are not going to care. Instant relief!
Be a female, wear a skimpy bikini, go outside to do some sunbathing, show some cheeks, start an OnlyFans account, make big big $$$ off of thirsty guys who are still on step 1 or 5. You might still be hot, but at least you’re rich. If Corinna Kopf can do it, so can you.
Just be thankful you don’t live in Baltimore or Central Florida.
So there you have it. I hope these tips help you in staying cool throughout this heat wave, or whenever life gets a little too hot to handle. Don’t forget that we’ve got new episodes of the Beantown Podcast every week without fail. See you there! Drizz out
Wow! If you know, you know, right guys? On Sunday night, HBO’s SHOCKING and EPIC and SEXY and apparently high school drama came to the epic and shocking Season Two conclusion. If you don’t know, Euphoria is a show with a lot of 30 year olds in it pretending to be high schoolers. At this point, I’m not sure if it’s meant to be a joke/parody, or if they’re completely serious in trying to pass off these middle aged people as 17, and at this point, I’m too afraid to ask. Anyways, it was the show everyone was talking about. It was wicked man. The vibes were like chill ya feel? WAZZZUUPPP. So yeah, if you thought ‘Oh Quinn, you don’t know hip lingo or you don’t have the chill vibes’ then you were wrong. So I’ve seen like 35 minutes combined of all the other episodes of this show, but I knew you guys, the Beanheads, would be craving my take on this one, so I spent an entire hour of my one day weekend watching the finale. Actually it was like an hour fifteen with credits! We didn’t watch the credits but I thought you should know.
I just want to say that it felt very catharctic to FINALLY have a show that portrays what high school is REALLY like. No class. No classes. A lotta drugs. Super white (ok that one is true for me). Hot moms. Hotter outfits. A lot of guns. It felt AMAZING to finally feel represented on the silver screen. Lady Bird was practically kindergarten. Now THIS is high school.
Before we recap what happened in the SHOCKING and EPIC Season Two finale, let’s meet the ensemble cast of characters. Again, these people more or less range from age 31 – 84.
Rue /Roux / Roo-Chains / Rootherford B Drugs – Portrayed by Zendaya (actual age, 31 or something). Supposedly this is the main character. She plays a drug addict. I think her father died this episode. There was a lot of jumping back and forth.
Kassie? I think? – Portrayed by Sydney Sweeney (actual age like 33 I think). Everyone hates her because she engaged in a consenting sexual relationship with a single guy, McSweeney, who we’ll talk about later. Idk I think she is america’s sweetheart.
Maddi – Portrayed by some 32 year old I don’t know (actual age I actually think she’s in her 30s). Apparently she used to date McDreamy. Now she’s just an Olivia Rodrigo wannabe. lame!!!
Lexi – Portrayed by Judd Apatow’s daughter (ok she’s probably only like 21). She dropped out of Northwestern after a year. Can’t handle the heat!!!!! Also everyone’s name has to end in “i” or “ie” or “y” to be on this show.
McSteamy – Portrayed by basically Walt Jr from Breaking Bad but worse (actual age has to be like 35). Everyone hates him apparently. I think he used to date Maddi, now he dates Kassi. I saw part of the first episode and he and Sydney were hooking up in a bathtub. It reminded me of me in high school, without the sex. What, I like baths.
Also, I don’t actually like baths. First, when you’re tall, there’s no way to fit entirely in the bath, so there’s always gonna be a part of you that is cold. Second, the whole thing is like a ticking time bomb. You make the water as hot as is tolerable, then when you can finally stand sitting in it submerged, you’ve got like 3 minutes before the water is too cold. Third, it’s really hard to properly wash your head/hair in the bath. When we were kids we would have a cup and you would dump water on your head like that big bucket at Magic Waters. You just get a bunch of soapy water in your eyes. You’re telling me this is supposed to be a relaxing experience?
Rue’s GF I think? – Portrayed by I have no idea (could be anywhere from 16 – 38). Idk, all she did this episode was tell Zendaya she misses her and she loves her. Didn’t Zendaya dump her in the SHOCKING and EPIC Season One finale? I think I heard that. Something to do with a train.
Fezcom – Portrayed by this one white guy (actual age – I’m positive this guy is like 42). I just learned during this episode his actual name is Fezco and no, he is not portrayed by Wilmer Vanderalma. You wanna talk missed opportunities, look no further. I think he is a drug dealer. The main antagonist of Euphoria.
Ashton “Kutcher” Ashtray – Portrayed by Fezcom’s brother (actual age – probably like 22 trying to be 7). This kid had it coming. Spoiler alert – He’s a cop killer. The main antagonist of Euphoria.
This other girl who I know nothing about but she is a little bit heavier (hard to say age-wise). I don’t mean to offend anyone. I literally don’t know anything about this one. I don’t think she had a line in this episode.
Rue’s mom (actual age like 83) – Total narc. Not cool mom.
McWaltJr’s Dad (60 year old trying to be a cool 45 year old). He lives in an abandoned warehouse with a transvestite and a guy in a speedo and I assume there was something illegal on that flash drive. Probably a deep fake.
Maddie and Kassi’s and Lexi’s Mom ? (actual age probably like 50 but she’s actually kinda hot). She’s someone’s mom, that’s all I know. The main hero of euphoria.
Ok so that’s basically it. There are a few other people like Roux’s sister, Roux’s dad who I think is dead, Mouse who I think everyone thinks is dead but he’s not actually dead, Fezcom’s girlfriend who is blonde and I don’t know anything about her, and I think that’s pretty much it. Oh and this one dweeb who played guitar for half the episode. Seriously, this episode was practically a musical.
So to recap in the episode, we’re basically inserted halfway into some weird community theatre play. I think it is directed by Judd Apatow’s daughter, who is either Maddie or Lexi, and I don’t really know what’s going on. There’s a blonde girl riding a merrie-go-round, and I think the horse is having sex with her? Sydney Sweeney is in the audience, so is Olivia Rodrigo, and then most of the other people too, including Rue. Also Rou’x funeral, oh wait no, her dad’s funeral, is happening right now. I don’t know if there is a time travel element to this show, it was not mentioned in the “Previously on” segment. So Sydney Sweeney is not happy about the sexually explicit content being featured, which makes sense because some of the people in the audience are supposed to be minors. So she basically interrupts the play, she’s like walking down to the stage and saying some gibberish I don’t understand at all. So she gets on the stage and starts talking, and she looks pretty rough, like she’s been crying a lot. Then the mom in the audience, who I think is her mom and Maddie’s mom, is like ‘oh no sydney come down from there’ and it is kinda awk because i don’t think this is planned. And Rue is in the audience doing the Michael Jackson popcorn thing. And Lexie is I think the writer of this disastrous play and she starts crying, probably cuz the acting is so bad. And sydney sweeney is just kind of grandstanding, then maddie comes up. I’m pretty sure they are feuding because sydney sweeney is dating mcdreamy now and maddie used to date him but she’s not over it so maddie is probably the main antagonist of Eurphora. Then they basically just start running around and it’s chaotic but there isn’t really any tension or entertainment value, they are kind of just running around. it’s really weird. And Roux and roue’s girlfriend keep looking at each other, spoiler alert, they’re gonna hook up off screen I think. And the bigger girl is there too. Is her name tanya? I think it is tanya. Oh and I just remembered this, there is an empty seat in the front row, apparently fezcom was going to be there. So eventually they all run off stage, but lexi is still there and she makes a speech which is dedicated to fezcom. Apparently she is crushing on him which is weird cuz he’s like looking REAL rough and is a drug dealer, but he stood her up, which is good cuz they do not have chemistry. And then they’re talking on the phone, I think this is in the future. Fezcom wants to live on a farm. I don’t know how he is going to peddle his drugs on a farm. Could be a good front though. I once saw an episode of justified where the guy was a butcher and he hid all his money in the hog carcasses. So just an idea.
Meanwhile while all this is going on mcdreamy is driving to the aforementioned abandoned warehouse where his father, Karl, lives. And he has a gun. I don’t actually know what McSteamy’s name is supposed to be. Looks like a Chaz. I’m going with Chaz. So Chaz walks into this warehouse, and it’s basically like the Count Olaf troupe from the Netflix adaptation of a Series of Unfortunate Events. We don’t get any explanation for who these people are or what is happening. I am pretty sure that Carl recently got divorced and is now semi-homeless. Chaz is NOT happy about that, so he has a gun. But he doesn’t do anything with the gun. It’s really weird. It doesn’t make any sense. Chekov is rolling in his grave. Nothing really happens, they just talk. I think Chaz was wearing a wire. Then the cops come, and Chaz gives them a flash drive. Lol, someone is living in the stone age. Karl gets arrested. There is no explanation given. Waste of a storyline.
Meanwhile while all this is going on we cut to Fezcom’s apartment. He is there with his blonde girlfriend. And Ashtry. and then this other guy, who apparently killed this one guy Mouse. We are not given Mouse’s real name. I would guess Justin. So Justin is apparently dead, and I think this other guy who is there, not justin, but this other guy, is wearing a wire, so he’s an informant, and he’s probably trying to get ashton or fezcom to say they killed mousse aka justin, but considering this all happened off screen, we don’t really know what’s going on. The blonde lady drops a glass and it shatters, then she starts to clean it up with her bare hands. What a dum dum. So then Ashtry kills the guy with the wire. Which is just about the most idiotic thing I can think of. You can’t just drop a police informant. Again, Ashtray is the main antagonist of Eurphoai. So then FEzcome is like “what did you do you little bitch?” and then the cops show up, understandably, because their informant was just murdered. So Fezcome is talking to Ahstry and he’s like “Let’s say I murdered this guy, not mouse, but the guy who was wearing the wire,” probably because Fezcom is already going away for life on drug charges. But Ashtray, who I think is a mute cuz he doesn’t really talk, is like “nah fam” and he grabs all these guns out of the washer dryer and locks himself in a bathroom, so the cops bust in, and Ashtray starts blasting wildly from the locked bathroom, and he even shoots Fezcome, which is a big twist because they were supposed to be good friends, so that was a surprise. Anyways, the blonde lady is on the ground, Fezcome is on the ground bleeding out, but I think he’ll be ok enough to make it in prison. The shooting stops, then the SWAT team opens the bathroom door, and that little bitch Ash absolutely blasts one of America’s finest right in the chest with a shotgun. Dude, not cool. So they go all Valkyrie on his ass and blow him to smitherines. FINALLY. That kid was awful.
And then there’s one other 5 minute scene where this Cordon Blue knock-off is playing guitar in his room and Rue is there. I think they used to hook up. He’s like “ooh bby can i sing you a song’ and she’s like ok sure. So he plays this really boring-ass song. For 4 unedited minutes. Who at HBO greenlighted this? biggest television debacle since the Dexter finale. I should watch that one too. Just the finale, I don’t need to see the rest.
So that was basically the episode. Rue and her ex lover might get back together, it’s unclear. Fezcom will probably die in prison cuz he is basically a cop killer. Maddie and Lexi and Cassie are all just in the school bathroom crying, apparently they’re friends again. McDreamy is kind of doing his own thing, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts hooking up with that one mom, like Stranger Things Season 2.
Overall, I did not care for this episode. Things were not explained very clearly. There was a cop execution. On HBO you often times get to see full nudity and there was no full nudity. My recommendation: Skip this one, and re-watch the Wire instead. 2 stars.
Heyo — Quinn David Furness here and I am coming in HOT with another new ‘instant classic’ sort of Beantown Blog post. Today is probably the first day in my overall recovery where I feel like can have any humor about the situation I’m about to describe, so pull up a chair, buckle up, hold onto your butts, and do all the other metaphorical things you need to do. Oh, and total vomit / diarrhea content warning, if that wasn’t already obvious. If reading about that stuff is going to make you sick, you might want to sit this one out. Or not. Because you know who couldn’t sit this nightmare out? Me. And also, Rachel. Let’s start there.
Rachel is an absolute champ and the total MVP of this situation. If you don’t know her, first off, where have you been living for the past year and half? We’ve been dating for that long and this was our first big international trip together. A common question when I describe the following incidents are whether or not Rachel had it too — She was fairly healthy during our trip thankfully, and I don’t think she had anything close to what I am about to describe to you. But throughout my entire fiasco, Rachel was amazing. I constantly woke her up due to a whole panoply of unnatural noises emanating from my body (if they’re looking for a sound effects guy for that next Jurassic Park sequel, I am your man). She bought us seats together (seems dumb but thanks Frontier!). She also dragged my ass through the Punta Cana airport as well as O’Hare, including bag check, customs part one, boarding, de-planing, customs part two, baggage claim, and securing a ride home from ORD. She bought me more gatorade and powerade than I can even remember. She even gave me her jean jacket to wear on the plane when I was getting slammed with fever and chills. She is my rock and I love her so much.
So let’s set the stage. We get to Punta Cana on Tuesday afternoon, and we were there until Sunday morning. The food in this place was…not amazing. Lots of buffet stuff, and nothing ever felt too fresh. Nevertheless, we were both able to pretty consistently find things we were willing to eat, and up until Saturday night, besides an upset stomach or two, we never had any major issues. Just sun, pools, beach, jerk chicken, drinks, more sun, and a lot of silly pictures. That is, until…
Saturday night / Sunday morning – 12:25 a.m: I awake. We went to bed around 10:30 or so. Bear in mind that we’d been living off of gin & tonics more or less for the last 5 days, so I figured those were finally just catching up to my stomach a little bit. So off I go to the toilet. Now, it’s important to understand that we were not only in a small hotel room, but the walls in this place were non-existent from a noise barrier perspective. Additionally, the bathroom had this weird pane of glass (like a frosted window) in the shower, and it was positioned such that when you were sitting on the toilet, you were looking directly into the shower at that pane of glass, and the bed is on the other side of it. When you turn the light on in the bathroom, the whole hotel room lights up (awful design), so I did everything you’re about to hear about in darkness so as not to wake Rachel with blinding lights, which isn’t vital to the story, but it just adds to the sense of despair I felt this entire time. And also blinding lights was the least of Rachel’s worries — The blood-curdling cries of a boyfriend in distress were probably more distracting.
I draw first blood, diarrhea style. Then I start thinking to myself, ‘Hey, is that nausea I hear?’ Oh yes, it sure was. Thankfully, the two garbage cans in our room were large, solid plastic ones, and may I say, great for vomiting. Perhaps the high quality of these trash bins was what kept me coming back for more! So I grab one “just in case” and head back to bed.
Five minutes later, 12:30 a.m: Boom – I sit up, and I am one of those people who when you know you know: Baby it’s vomit time. Let’s just say the floodgates opened. I am very glad I grabbed that garbage can because I was keeled over on my side of the bed doing my best niagara falls impression. From this point forward, I’m 97% confident neither Rachel nor I would sleep again until about 10 p.m. the following night. 22-hour travel day, nice!
Now, the remainder of this story will go on without timestamps, because let me tell you, the amount of delirium I was experiencing rivaled anything I’ve ever felt before. I was struggling to remember where I was. I kept going in and out of visions of the resort food in my head (which made me more and more nauseous). My head was playing a bizarre playlist of some of my favorite artists, including Chopin, The Killers, and Ben Gibbard. No I am not joking.
Very quickly, I developed my routine. I would head to the bathroom, shit my brains out, then about 3-4 minutes later, vomit my brains out into the garbage can while still sitting on the toilet (and occasionally the side of the bed, you’re welcome babe!), then immediately after, get the most intense sweat of all time for about 5 minutes. This all took about 15 minutes per cycle, and I would then go lie back down. After each time, I would sip a little bit of water, because you know, I really didn’t want to end up in a Dominican hospital bed hooked up to an IV. Yeah, there was no way water had a chance in hell of staying down for longer than 30 minutes.
This whole cycle occurred SIX TIMES. This was a new record for me. I’ve probably had diarrhea around 5 times in the span of a night after some bad Indian food or something, but a steady and consistent cycle of diarrhea, vomiting, then a quick yet intense sweat session six total times? Interspersed with wild, wacky, and miserable spells of delirium? Best slumber party of all time.
My last vomit posted at about 6 a.m., and if you’re curious, no, there’s really nothing left to puke up at that point, other than blood and what I assume were unnecessary sections of my small intestine. The diarrhea didn’t stop until well into Tuesday. Around 7-8 a.m. or so, Rachel gets up and gets moving (breakfast, packing, etc). I continue to lie in bed battling wicked fever and chills. The reality of our situation is finally starting to set in — Our shuttle is coming to get us at 10:20 a.m., and that’s just the start. We have to go from a remote island resort in the Dominican Republic to the north side of Chicago today. Dear God…
From 8 – 10 a.m., I sporadically force myself to stand and pack for our long journey back. I am not kidding you when I say I could only manage being up for about 2-3 minutes to collect and pack things before I physically felt like I was going to pass out. I tried my best to get a little water down here and there, but I really was not interested in vomiting in-transit (which was going to be from approximately 10 a.m. eastern until 8 p.m. central, so about an 11 hour travel day). Eventually, 10 a.m. arrives, and I just had to make the mental commitment to myself that this was happening. We were NOT going to be stranded in the Caribbean panicking while I was hooked up to an IV trying to figure out when and how to get back home. We make our way to the lobby, check out, then pack ourselves into a shuttle van with some of the least amount of legroom known to man. At this point, I really feel like I’m tempting fate. I wasn’t sure what was most likely to happen first — Explosive diarrhea, vomit volcano, or just casually passing out from dehydration. The worst part was the van had multiple pickups from different resorts, and each time you enter and exit a resort here, there are quite literally one million speed bumps you have to go over. These are always a nuisance, but when you’re feeling ready to just give up and die, they become extra irritating.
Eventually we make it to the airport. Thankfully, the line for check-in isn’t terribly long (probably 20 mins total for us). Rachel got us a spot in line and I casually sauntered over to the bathroom to shit my brains out again. I’m not even sure where all this shit was coming from at this point — Did the 10 gallons of gin I drank throughout the week just hangout until then? Unclear. As I returned to our place in line, I really started to notice what the rest of the day’s primary physical ailment nemesis would be, and while it is consistent with food poisoning symptoms and doesn’t sound as bad as what I’ve described already, it was by far my least favorite part of the whole experience: My body ached like I have never experienced before. I could hardly stand. My hips felt like they had just been sucker punched by Floyd Mayweather. 50,000 times. My calves were on fire. My internal temperature remained more or less actually on fire. My shoulders/neck area were probably similar to what Atlas feels like when he carries the earth (I don’t care if he’s a Titan, even those guys hurt). Any sort of walking / standing in line, which you do a whole hell of a lot of in airports (check-in, customs, security, boarding, etc) felt like the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life. At one point, I believe I told Rachel I thought I was going to die, but to be honest, I don’t really recall anything I said that day. I am sure this was comforting for her to hear.
We get to our gate, and there is a lot people, noise, and food. Any scent of anything made me feel like I was going to puke out more of my non-existent stomach contents. Another bad part about the body aches? I wasn’t even comfortable sitting down. Like it didn’t matter what position I was in — If I stayed in the same body position for longer than 5 minutes, I would be in unbearable pain. So you can imagine how much fun I had on the plane, right? I spent the 4-hour plane ride with my eyes closed alternating every 5-10 minutes back and forth between sitting upright and sitting forward with my elbows on knees and head in hands wondering what I did to deserve this. Again, Rachel was a champ throughout all of this, and I’m sure sitting next to me this whole time watching all this unfold was a SUPER FUN and NOT AT ALL STRESSFUL experience for her. Love you babe. Oh, and if you’re wondering, no I could not even whip out Toon Blast and play that on the flight, my mind would not allow it. Oh, and Frontier seat technology should definitely be sold to the US Military for their labor camp experiments. I don’t know if we have those, but it seems like we probably do.
Finally, the 4-hour nightmare that was the flight was over. I could legitimately write another blog post about the flight alone, including the screaming kids 2 rows behind us who just LOVED to raise the armrest, drop it, let it bounce a few times, then repeat. For 4 hours. And so many other nice and pleasant things these kids did, but we should finish up here. Everything at ORD went relatively smooth, although again, it felt like we had to walk a 5k, and when you are feverish, nauseous, holding in diarrhea, and not completely aware of where you are or what you’re doing or what the meaning of life is, it’s a lot. Special shout-out to Betty and Jose Ramos for picking us up and driving us back to the north side — Much love and appreciation.
Around 7:30 p.m. local time or so, I finally arrived home. I threw my clothes off, grabbed a glass of water to have next to bed, got the puke bucket ready to go in case, and crashed. Recovery in the following days was very slow-going; I went from Saturday around 7 until Monday at 7 without eating anything (I think, hard to remember). It is now Friday, 5-6 days after the incident, and I think I am ok. I took a sick day on Monday to sleep / catch up on emails, so shout-out to my coworkers as well for putting up with my extra-extended time away. Yesterday, Thursday, was the first day I had without an awful sore throat from the six lovely puking sessions. Apologies to my esophagus / trachea / whatever.
This was not my first food poisoning adventure — I’ve had bad Chinese, undercooked tilapia, and at least one or two other bad experiences, but this was far and away the worst ever in 26 years of living. Rachel was amazing — Strong, confident, helpful, and a total babe throughout the entire experience. Thanks to all who read this far — I feel tough as an ox now.
Yes, even with Richard there. Hey folks, Quinn David Furness here. You didn’t think I’d let you go a whole year without a new Beantown Blog post, did you? Well, if you follow my show, you know that last Saturday was moving day for me. Unlike my last few moves, this one was inter-city, going from the quiet tree-lined streets of Rogers Park to the hustle and bustle of (technically) Lincoln Park but basically East Lakeview. Let me get one thing straight right off the bat — The benefits of my new location overall are immense, and I’m very grateful for them. I am within half a mile of a Mariano’s, a soon to be mini-Mariano’s, a Walgreens, a Trader Joe’s (who was Joe anyways?), a Walmart Neighborhood Market (haven’t built up the courage to try that one yet), and even a TJ Maxx. Does anyone know anything about their men’s collection? Is it any good? Also, what is going on with that extra ‘x’ ? It kind of makes you think it’s either a plus size store or one of those adult stores you see the billboards for in southern Illinois. Oh, and I’m super close to the train as well and my new work commute is literally half as long as my old one, so that’s awesome. AND I’m super close (for now at least) to my super sweet gf Rachel. She’s a total babe but that’s a topic for a different blog post.
But if you will allow me to ever so slightly complain / feel sad for just a hot second, I miss my old apartment. I think that’s fairly natural when you move to a new place / neighborhood. Heck, I’ve only been in this place for 6 days now and I am not even fully unpacked (if anyone finds the power cord to my PS3 please message me!!!). But I don’t know man, being on the first floor with a gigantic window to the outside is a little weird — lots of noise and people constantly walking past. And the mega-battle between me and the lingering cigarette smoke from the previous tenants feels like it could be a battle I fight throughout this entire lease. Also, the upstairs neighbor’s dog whines a lot and I am not the biggest fan of whatever Eastern European dance jams they have been playing at 3am lately. It’s also super crowded down here! I knew that going in — I’ve lived in Lincoln Park twice before in my life, but there was something nice and quaint about the simple life up in Rogers Park. And no back door? What am I supposed to do for haircuts now??
Anyways, I think it’s ok to feel a little sad and unsettled — I haven’t gotten the Tiger Blanket hung up yet. If anyone on the north side is reading this, hit me up! Let’s grab a drink.
Hey folks, Quinn coming to you LIVE after a little time away from the Beantown Blog. No, nothing is wrong. I just haven’t felt very creatively inspired under quarantine. I wonder how common that is? A lot of musicians and artists have managed to do a lot of live streaming and such but I tell you what, I just haven’t really felt motivated or inspired from either an art or a comedy perspective the last 3ish months. I don’t really have an explanation for it. That being said, times are wild right now. It’s hard to know how to feel, so I thought I’d share with you a funny little story to perhaps brighten your day for 5 minutes.
So anyone who’s known me for a while knows that I worked at Kmart in high school. The Big K. It was a family affair. My dad worked at Kmart. My brother worked at Kmart. I worked at Kmart. And it was cool because I was the token male teenage cashier. That’s not a common thing…most of the males who work at Kmart do stuff with stocking or loading/unloading. Me? I was signing people up for Shop Your Way Rewards and memorizing manager codes to correct prices that were consistently way off. To say the E State Kmart was poorly run would be…generous. Anyways, I started working at Kmart right after I turned 16 at the end of my sophomore year of high school and held that job for awhile. There were good times and bad times (mostly bad times), and I think I made somewhere around $8.00/hour, but hey, gas in those days was literally around $4.00/gallon, so you needed all the work you could get. When I went off to college, I knew I’d be getting that classic DePaul 6-week Winter Break, so I decided when I moved to Chicago, ‘Hey, I might as well keep this job. It’ll be nice to have when I come back home.’ According to the Big K policy (which I’m 95% certain was made up on the spot), I had to work one shift per month to keep my job. This was going to be a pain in the ass, but I decided to give it a shot.
October 2013 rolls around, I’m in my first couple weeks of school at DePaul, and I decide to come home for a weekend to work my one monthly shift at the Big K. I communicate to them beforehand that I’m coming in Saturday morning to work 8a-1p, and when the day finally arrives, I throw on my blue polo and head on in. In I walk, and it’s not long before I realize that no one at the store got my message, and I wasn’t on the schedule. That didn’t stop me from punching in! At first, I decided to kind of be a wildcard and tidy up and restock some shelves. However, after about an hour of that, I got really bored. Before long, I came to the conclusion that this was just going to need to be a run out the clock situation. So from about 9am to 1pm, I literally went into the men’s room, posted up shop in a stall, and stayed there for the duration of my shift. No smartphone. I might have grabbed a Sue Grafton novel but I really don’t remember.
Once 1pm hit, I casually clocked out at layaway and mosied right on out of there. Two weeks later, I mailed them a letter from Chicago that basically said ‘I’m outta here, fam.’ I think that’s really when Kmart started their downward spiral. RIP to the Big K and RIP to my first and hopefully only ever retail job.
P.S. I was going to write more but the ‘A’ key fell off my keyboard at the start of this post and it took me about an hour to write this much plus I’m grumpy now.
Hey Beanheads–Quinn David Furness coming in HOT on a Monday morning. First things first, thank you to EVERYONE who made our 3rd Annual Beantown Podcast Pledge Drive Telethon Fundraiser such an immense success, and I’m not just saying that–We’re currently at $340 and more money is on its way from generous donors on the East Coast. I’m doing some traveling early on this week but as soon as I get back to Chicago, we’ll be reaching out with more information regarding our donor gifts. And of course, a special shout-out to those Topaz Elite Members–I think you get to board in Zone 1 on your next 3 flights? Text me and we’ll work out the details…
Anyways, coming at you with just a short lil baby installment of the Beantown Blog. Just a nice SHOT to get your week started. And if you have today off because it’s Presidents Day (I don’t), then enjoy this from the comfort of your couch. As you probably did not know unless you watch Fox News, yesterday was supposed to be the 2020 Daytona 500. Now, something that a lot of people don’t know about me because I generally don’t talk about it that much is that I actually like NASCAR quite a bit. More specifically, I like Jimmie Johnson–He’s not your prototypical/stereotypical stock car driver. He’s a cool guy from California with a wife and kids, he’s a big triathlete and marathon runner, and he’s got a fun beard just like me. Well, Jimmie has won 7 championships, tied for the most in the history of stock car racing, and this is his last year of racing before he retires. So you can probably see why I’d be a little extra invested in this year’s Daytona 500! As you probably did not hear, after about 10-15 laps, the already-delayed race was put under red flag for hours due to rain and eventually postponed until tomorrow (today which is Monday, February 17th) at 3pm CST. This is a problem. I have to drive to St Louis this afternoon and there’s no way around it, meaning it’s highly unlikely I’ll get to see any of the remaining 180 laps of the 2020 Daytona 500. You’re probably thinking, ‘Gee, Quinn, that’s a bummer but that’s only the 2nd rainout in 62 years of the Daytona 500 so it’s probably never happened to you before and it won’t happen again!’ Ha, we plan, God smiles. Allow me to take you on a journey back to 2012…
The year was 2012. I was really into NASCAR at this time as I had some friends down in Rochelle who were big fans as well, and frankly, these were the only people I’ve ever met in 25 years on this Earth who actually really liked NASCAR. So it’s a beautiful February day in late 2012, and there I go driving down I-39 to Rochelle, IL to watch the Great American Race with my friends. Well, it’s raining in Daytona. The race can’t even start. I probably get there around 1pm, we’ve got pizza, beer nuts, Mountain Dew, a whole big spread. So there we sit, waiting and waiting, watching Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds play rock-paper-scissors for 4 hours on LIVE air until NASCAR eventually postpones the race until 1pm the following day, a Monday, also a school day. So I’m bummed out for obvious reasons, but I’m already cooking up a little scheme to watch the race the following day.
I gotta tell ya–My mom Jane might be the real MVP of this story. In a rare moment of allowing her kid to sacrifice education for NASCAR (first and only time baby!!), I convinced Mom to let me skip AP Calculus to come home early from school (just community college classes in the morning) to watch the race. So there I am, leaving classes around noon, strolling on home to catch Daytona. Except it was still raining in Daytona. This time they postponed it until 7pm. Uh oh. Big problem. Now not only am I FAILING out of AP Calculus (thank you MOM how could you do this to me???), but of course, I have the end of the year swim banquet that night, and let’s be honest, this is like the Oscars of high school sports. You just can’t miss it (unless you’re Dame Maggie Smith, and let’s be honest, my cheekbones just aren’t that high). So there I sit at the swim banquet in absolute agony, receiving updates every 5 minutes from my friends in Rochelle. What’s that? Danica Patrick wrecked Jimmie Johnson 30 minutes into the race? FML. And honestly, I don’t think we talk about this enough as a society, I’m so happy Danica Patrick was a huge failure in stock car racing. Yes, she’s more or less from my hometown, yes, it was very cool to see a female driver break through like that, but yes, she was also a gigantic pain in the ass who has an awful personality and cannot race to save her life. There, I said it.
So the swim banquet finally ends around 10 or something in that range–I RUSH home driving 120 mph down Perryville Rd because I wanted to really feel like I was part of the Daytona action. The second I walk in, the race goes under yellow flag (caution). Bummer. But hey, I made it, I’m in front of my TV, nothing can stop me now from catching the end of this race. HA! This happens (RIP Juan Pablo Montoya):
In case you’re wondering, yes, that is absolutely wild and completely abnormal. So, at this point, I still haven’t seen a single lap of green flag racing, but I sure as hell have witnessed one of the most bizarre accidents in racing history. Also, in case you’re wondering, this isn’t the type of accident you just clean up in 10 minutes then get back to racing. Nope, they had to first put out the fire, then clear all the trucks, cars, and debris from the track, then they rolled out the Tide detergent and a whole bunch of other chemicals in an attempt to repair the badly damaged track. Total repair time? Something like 90 minutes to 2 hours. Well do you wanna take a guess as to what happened in that time frame. That’s right–16-year old Quinn David Furness, all snuggled and warm on the couch late at night, falls asleep. Literally minutes before going back to green flag racing and after close to 2 hours of sitting there just waiting to see some real racing, I crashed hard (not as hard as Montoya but still). In the wee hours of Tuesday morning, Matt Kenseth’s #17 car, driving for Roush Fenway, had won the Daytona 500, and yours truly, Quinn David Furness, had seen exactly ZERO green flag laps of racing.
Looks like every 8 years at this point, I’ll get shammed from watching the Daytona 500. Can’t wait for 2028! Q OUT
Ok so every year in March they have the NCAA Division I basketball tournament and they call it “March Madness” which is where 68 teams compete in a 3-week long tournament single elimination-style to see who will be crowned king of the dance, or some Jim Nantz-inspired term like that. So when I was a freshman in a college back in 20–(**does the thing where you hide your mouth and muddle your words to protect your age cuz I’m getting OLD**), me and some buddies all made brackets to see who would be crowned king of the bracket for king of the dance, I think we had an acronym or something. The winner would get a pooled cash prize (likely something in the $17 total range because we were pretty poor) and the loser had to do something real stupid like fast for an entire week. I think it was originally thrown out there as a joke example, but at some point it just became the reality of it. Now, this is a pretty harsh punishment as far as those go, but frankly, I wasn’t too concerned, because I am a SPORTS FIEND. Well, famous last words…
Ok, so do you like how I just jumped RIGHT into the story? So often times when you read things on the internet like blogs or articles or recipes or cheat code pages or erotic fan fiction or other stuff you get these long rambling intro sections that no one in their right mind reads all of and you just find yourself scrolling and scrolling and scrolling and sometimes you get some really brutal run-on sentences and it just seems so silly like who has the time in their life to read through every single little detail you throw in there like it’s the autobiography of Scott Farrell or “Triumph, Tears, and Tales of the Stage” as some people know it which by the way I do not recommend reading because yours truly is coming out with the audiobook for it in a few months time here! And often times these articles/blurbs/blog posts/entries/articles/blurbs/blog posts will find any excuse possible to use every single synonym in the thesaurus to describe their story or their recipe or whatever it might be and it just ends up leading to these super long and bloated and and lengthy and protracted and delayed and dragging and lingering and prolonged and sustained and boundless and diffusive and dilatory and drawn-out and limitless and long-winded and draining and debilitating and taxing and tiresome and depleting and fatiguous (I made that one up) paragraphs that just go on and on and on and you find yourself what the hell you’re actually doing here reading it? Thank GOD I didn’t do that with my opening paragraph. That would be miserable.
AND THEN next thing you know it spills into another paragraph that just goes on and on and on…Ok, I’m kidding. I’m done. Anyways, enjoy this recipe for mini frittatas!
Ok, so as you can probably predict, my bracket absolutely tanked. I think I picked Wofford vs BYU-Hawaii in the Championship Game because I like a cinderella but man it just did not pan out. Yep, I lost, and thus, I had to fast for an entire week. No solid food. No yogurt or jell-o. No coffee. No tea. Nothing with calories or any nutrition anything. No vitamins. Just water. Plain ole Chicago tap water. The plan was to go from 12:00:00 AM on a Monday morning (start of the week) until 11:59:59 PM on a Sunday night, and this must’ve been sometime in April or May. I thought to myself, “Hey, this should be a good challenge, but it’ll be a great opportunity to work off some of that freshman 15 (which was up to about a freshman 23 at that point).”
Ok, so Day 1, Monday, was really not too bad. Classic Monday. Go to class. Take a nap (Nearly every weekday of Winter Quarter freshman year I would take a nap in my dorm room from 2-4pm and listen to some sort of John Williams or James Newton Howard film score). Do homework. Practice piano for 3-4 hours. It really wasn’t too bad. The first thing you notice when you’re on a water fast (for me at least) was not how hungry I felt, but how ’empty’ life felt without setting time aside for meals. I think this mental challenge was just as tough as the hunger pains for me over the course of the week, and it was the most noticeable thing for me on Day 1. Nighttime rolled around and I definitely started to feel the hunger come on — It’s pretty rare that we just cruise right through the night without filling up on a meal 2-4 hours before falling asleep, right? That part was a little weird, but I didn’t have too much trouble sleeping which was good.
Day 2, Tuesday. Same routine. Class. Nap. Homework. Piano. Classic stuff. By midday Tuesday at about the 36-hour point, it was starting to get pretty uncomfortable. I think I still pooped on Tuesday, but that was probably my last one for awhile. The hunger was flaring up about as bad as it would ever get. The one nice thing about the water fast is that your ‘hunger’ pretty much subsides once you get around 72-96 hours, it’s just the cravings and extra time all of a sudden that really mess you up. Tuesday was bad. It reminded me of the scene(s) in ‘Trainspotting’ when Renton (Ewan McGregor) tries to get clean by locking himself in his room. Turns out when you haven’t had food for 36-40 hours, all you really want to think about is how much you miss food. It’s harder to sleep. All you do is lie there awake thinking about how much you wish you could eat. How if you just had a sandwich or something from the student center this misery would all be over. Woof.
Day 3, Wednesday. This was the day when I think I started to become more at peace with the situation both mentally and physically. I wasn’t as crazy hungry. I certainly wasn’t quite as tormented mentally, but the extra time in the day you get from not eating was still a big roadblock for me. See, it wasn’t a situation for me where it’s like “Oh, you have an extra 60-75 minutes in your day now, you can be so much more productive!” There wasn’t really anything else I was trying to do. I already had time for all the stuff I needed to do. You might think, “Hey Quinn, why don’t you read a book for fun?” Bitch please, college students don’t read books for fun. I think throughout the majority of the week I used my ‘extra time’ to play covers of Green Day songs on the piano. The other piano majors must’ve really loved that. Sorry guys.
Day 4, Thursday. At this point, I was at peace with everything going on with my body and my situation, but I was also starting to feel a little stir-crazy in the sense that up until this point, I felt like I had just been trying to ‘survive’ by doing as little as possible physically (which makes sense). However, I was really sick of sitting on my butt thinking about how great it was that I was actually surviving the 7-day water fast. So I decide to hit the gym. Now, this was a pretty cool accomplishment, considering I think I went to the gym all of 10 times my entire freshman year. I’d never really been exposed to a gym setting before college (other than the YMCA where I exclusively swam) so I had no idea what I was doing, but lo and behold, there’s pale overweight Quinn Furness, who hasn’t pooped for 48 hours, hopping on the treadmill without a single ounce of fuel in his body….I think I made it all of a mile and a half before my body basically said “Nah we’re good.” My oh my, that had to have been the biggest headache I’ve ever had in my life after that. One thing that is CRITICAL to successfully pulling off a water fast is drinking enough water. I’m happy to say that as I sit here writing this (on an 18:6 fasting fling of my own) in 2020, my water consumption is very high and that’s not a problem, but I can guarantee that back when I was a freshman in college, there’s no way in hell I was drinking enough water. Talk about a sick combo of dehydration and no food in your system. I was definitely out of commission the rest of the day.
Days 5-7, Friday-Sunday. I was over it as soon as I woke up on Friday. Fridays are great, right? End of the week, hang out with friends, have dinner together, do some late night snacking, all the hits. Well, when you take the food away, you lose a lot of the social aspects. I think I was too weak (in more ways than one) to go hang out with friends who were having meals, so I just started to feel more and more isolated. I would see my girlfriend-at-the-time Katie every day for sure, but being the pretty terrible boyfriend I’m sure I was when I was 19, I don’t remember her presence really doing too much for me one way or the other (that’s an overarching theme in general but I’ll save that for another post. Suffice to say though, it’s not her, it’s me) (Did that end up coming across like I wasn’t performing sexually or something? I didn’t want it to come across that way. We never had sex. She was really into dry humping though. First and last person I’ve ever dated who really liked that. Gotta tell ya, be careful when you’re doing that with jeans on. Woof, that can be tough on the boys). The last 3 days of the fast, I was really miserable. The hunger pains were not too awful, but I was just completely over the idea of me not being able to eat. All my friends thought I was a lunatic for not eating. The ones I’d lost the bet to didn’t believe that I’d gone this far without eating–Their doubting of my journey was really helpful to this whole process he said sarcastically. But alas, Sunday evening arrived, and around 11pm or so, I went to the student center to prepare for a feast. Because it was a Sunday evening, I don’t anything except for the C-store was open. Now, to be totally honest, I don’t remember exactly what I had. I’m fairly confident it included a 20-oz of Mountain Dew (maybe LiveWire or something), a family-size bag of potato chips, and definitely a sandwich of some sort, but I wanted to be careful as I’d read about how people really messed up their bodies by eating way too much coming off a fast. Ha, kind of funny how the guy who hasn’t eaten for 6+ days is worried about messing up his body. There was no big hoorah celebration. I ate my meal alone at midnight in the dorm kitchen probably watching Family Feud or something. For the most part, I had tried to keep this on the downlow, because no one who ever found out every had anything positive to say. Am I trying to defend the concept of water fasting for 7 days? Absolutely not. But constantly hearing negativity is going to decrease the quality of your life one way or another.
It was hard. It was REAL hard. As far as my “Hardest things I’ve had to do” list goes, this is at least Top 5, if not higher (other entries include detasseling corn in thunderstorms, loading a moving truck by yourself then driving through the night from Baltimore to Chicago then unloading the truck, getting denied by the vv cute Latina girl in my freshman dorm who I had a pseudo one night stand with but hey now she’s married and is expecting a baby boy so I’m actually really happy for her, and trying to stay in key and time with this really drunk lady in Wilmington, DE when we sang karaoke with Bon Jovi’s “I’ll Be There for You”). I never want to do something like this again, and I don’t plan to. I think I lost about 15-20 lbs total. Most of it was water weight, and I don’t think I kept any of it off, but damn those before and after pics were pretty amazing to look at. A true miracle of the human anatomy! **if this post gets 3 likes, we’ll release the photos**
Alright, that’s all I got for ya. Work’s been busy, but glad I was able to get this one in. I’m going to Alabama next week. If anyone has any survival tips, email me at email@example.com Enjoy this fun picture — QD out
Yeah you heard me–It’s Quinn David Furness and we’re coming at you HARD with another fresh installment of the Beantown Blog. Before I jump into the juicy details of my incredible weight loss journey, I want you all to know that yes, beantownpodcast.com is still an active site. The problem is we haven’t been able to get all of our new podcasts on the ‘Podcasts’ page because of a technical glitch, but I’m blaming big tech. So for the time being, you can either access the most recent one from the home page, or you can find all our content on our SoundCloud page, or if you haven’t been accessing our content in the first place, just keep doing what you’re doing–I don’t get paid either way.
But let’s get to the good stuff–This entry is going to be bite-sized, you know, something you can read while sipping on your morning cup o joe or when you’re on the toilet with the runs from your morning cup o joe. By the way, I recently got the Evanston Township High School newsletter in my mailbox even though I didn’t go to ETHS. First I was gonna throw it away, but then I figured I would put it in my bathroom near the loo for visitors and guests to read. It has been a big hit. Many have reported calmer and less runny BMs as a result. Speaking of BMs, my weight loss!
You waited 3 paragraphs for this, so here’s the dirty little secret to how I lost 45 lbs in 5 days the RIGHT Way: 1) Develop extreme tonsillitis (it’s like regular tonsillitis but more extreme) with accompanying symptoms that mimic the flu; 2) Vomit and (apologies for language) shit your brains out until you’re not sure if what just came out was lunch from October or part of your liver; 3) Don’t eat anything for about 72 hours. Water and pills, it’s the only way to live your life! 4) This is optional, but I found it to really help out with that pesky water weight we’re always trying to lose before swimsuit season: Get that 103 degree fever going and don’t let up. If you feel it starting to break at any moment, throw on another quilt and ride the storm baby. Tell you what, I turned my boring queen-sized bed into a water bed after just 2 nights of ER-grade fever. 5) This is optional, but I find it helps for PR purposes. Many of you know the story of how I got alcohol poisoning on the Fourth of July many years ago and ended up vomiting on the Red Line on my way to work. Well, Wednesday night, despite feeling like pure death, I toughed it out and went to my focus group on ‘snacks’ for $125 (much to my chagrin it was not critiquing the new Daisy Fuentes 2020 calendar–look for an upcoming blog post on the negative effects of false advertising). On the way home, I knew there was no way I was going to make it, but where young Quinn would have foolishly tricked himself into believing he could make it all the way, I knew I had to either get off somewhere in Lakeview or it was gonna be all over. Well, literally all over me cuz where else are you supposed to vomit on a train? Shout out to the trash can at the Addison stop–you’re the real MVP. And shout out to my body for time and time again being excellent at giving me an approximately 60-second signal before I’m about to blow chunks–that is awfully impressive and saved me some trouble (note to 2015 Quinn on July 5th riding the Red Line south–listen to your gut man, literally).
Anyways, I’m down to 165 lbs and I’ve never felt more alive. I know what you’re saying–“Quinn, if you lost 45 lbs wouldn’t you only be down to somewhere right around 200 lbs?” Well, apparently the extreme tonsillitis can affect your ability to perform basic arithmetic as well. It’s really not my problem. I’ve gone down 3 pants sizes, my phone won’t even unlock for facial recognition anymore, and I just landed a part in my local community theater’s holiday production of Tchaikovsky’s ‘The Nutcracker’ as ‘Candy Cane #4.’ It’s a small part (literally) with relatively thin character development (again, literally), but I think it could really lead to something big. No one knew who Christian Bale was before ‘The Machinist,’ and now look at this guy. I’m a British accent and one public freakout at the lights guy away from getting a role in Terminator 7. I heard this is going to be the best one since Terminator 6. How many Terminators have there actually been? Can someone check? Christian Bale was in Terminator 4. I saw that by myself in theaters because my friends who invited me went to a different showtime without telling me. That’s the only time I saw a Terminator movie in theaters.
Hey friends, fans, and followers. Quinn David Furness here coming at you hard with another installment of the Beantown Blog. I’m hittin’ you up LIVE from DCA, aka Regan, in Arlington, Virginia. I’ve spent about as much time in airports the past 24 hours as I have out of them due to flight delays, and I have to connect in Cleveland later today, which might be the worst thing of all time, but minus that and the severe jet lag from changing time zones, I’m doing ok. Wait til they end DST this weekend. Combine that with a flight to Seattle and I think I might as well just keel over and die. Maybe that’s extreme.
Anyways walking around Crystal City really brought me back today to exactly 2 years ago, October 2017, when I ran my second-ever marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon, which starts and ends outside of the Pentagon. As a quick aside, I walked to the Pentagon today to maybe try to go undercover there but apparently post-9/11 you’re not allowed to do that anymore. Seems capricious and arbitrary but rules are rules I guess. Probably an Obama-era thing?
The 2017 Marine Corps Marathon was not a pleasant experience for me, so I thought what better way to feel sorry for myself for an extended period of time than to share my pain with you all :))) That’s a triple chin cuz I had fajitas for lunch–Mercy. Ok, so it’s mid to late October 2 years ago. The marathon is on a Sunday. Monday-Thursday the week of, I’m working in Pittsburgh. Then Friday and Saturday I’m working in Philadelphia. And of course the race is in Arlington. So first problem, I really haven’t had time to workout correctly or eat well the week of the race, cuz I’m just out in PA TCBing, you feel me? So rough leadup to the race. It gets a lot worse. With marathons, you have to pickup your packet in person 1 or 2 days before. Here’s the issue: I’m in PA the whole week and the race expo is at National Harbor (in Maryland across the river from DCA). So Friday, I work until about 2pm in downtown Philly, and the expo closes in National Harbor at 8. Now, that’s only about 150 miles, so you’d think hey, not too bad. Wrong. Friday afternoon traffic in the DMV might be Dante’s 5th level of hell. 95 was backed up between Boston and Savannah. Woof. I leave Philly right after 2pm and don’t get to Nat’l Harbor until 7:30 with just enough time to meander through the hellscape that is that area to get my packet. I’m literally at the expo for all of 10 minutes before I turn around and hop right back in the car. I then drive 3 and a half hours BACK to Philadelphia as I have to work there the next morning.
So Saturday comes, I work in the morning and afternoon, then it’s about 5pm and I have to first go to my home in Baltimore to get my marathon stuff before driving down to DCA, where I have to drop my rental car off. I then have to take the train into DC to my friend’s apartment, where I’m crashing on her guest bed (TYSM to Annie and Zach, you all are the real MVPs). All the travel is fine, but that’s a lot of segments, and I don’t get to the apartment until close to midnight. After a short restless sleep (road games can be tough), I wake up at 4am to eat and stretch for the race (I believe start time is about 7am). The plan is to just uber to the pentagon, as I wanted a no fuss morning. Mistake: I hope in the Uber, and we go all of 4 blocks or so before the driver tells me there’s no way he’s taking me down there. He was a very kind man. Eye roll. He then asks me to get out of the Uber. So there I am in the middle of DC at 5:30am with no clue where I am and not a great idea of where I need to go. To top it all off, I’m stuck in a huge crowd of runners who are congregating for a DIFFERENT race. Wow, that was fun. Eventually after asking enough people, I make my way to the train and get to the Pentagon right before start time.
The race itself was awful. It was about 80 degrees without a cloud in the sky (for those of you who aren’t runners, that’s nice for about 1 mile and then it’s miserable for the last 25.2 miles). The route is also fairly hilly at the start, and this really knocked me on my ass. By mile 13, my iPod died (2007 iPod Nano is still going strong but this specific day was not its finest hour). At mile 16, I pulled my hamstring. Lemme tell ya, even with all the adrenaline, a full 10 miles on a gimpy leg is a LONG 10 miles. By somewhere around mile 20 or so, I could tell the heat exhaustion was present and I was headed toward heat stroke. I don’t really know where the distinction between those two are, so I’m not sure which one I ended up with, but it was miserable. Finally, after over 4 hours of more or less utter and complete disaster, the race was over. However, I still had to get to an Enterprise near Georgetown where I was renting a car to then drive back to Baltimore to grab my work stuff before driving to West Virginia for another work trip. Getting there was not easy–On the train, it was terribly hot, and after feeling super light-headed for awhile, my body finally caved and I passed out. After remaining unconscious for what was probably 10-15 minutes (this part of the story is slightly unclear for obvious reasons) , I woke up having missed my stop. Finally, after backtracking a little bit, I got to the Enterprise. While the rest of the day was still challenging, the worst of it was over. By 7pm or so, I made it to West Virginia, where I proceeded to eat a big ole bowl of gumbo (obviously, cuz it was West Virginia) before crashing hard.
So what did we learn from this race: 1) Hate hill running. This was one thing I really struggled with in Baltimore. Maybe it’s ‘better’ for you than regular flat running (AKA Chicago), but man, I really hated it. 2) The Marine Corps Marathon course was cool, but there were a few spots that were awful. Notably the bridge right at the end. You basically go 3 miles (it’s like mile 19-21) on the highway with no water or shade, and when it’s 80 degrees and cloudless and you’ve been running for 3 hours already, it’s not fun. 3) Keeping up your exercise routine while traveling is tough enough. Running a marathon while is really hard.