Sick Season

On Friday afternoon last week, Benji came down with a fever. It hung around all weekend, causing him to miss school on Monday. But by Monday the fever had subsided into some congestion and coughing, and we figured the symptoms settled into those of a nasty cold.

Now I’m revising my thinking. Benji’s fever came back full force this morning, I’m addition to the coughing. He’s miserable and, to be honest, us grown-ups are miserable too. Ian hasn’t yet been able to go in to the office this week for work, and he’s only gotten in half-day equivalents at home with Benji. I’ve gone into the office every day, but left early to try to get home and help out. Continue Reading >>

Two Legs!

It may sound silly to reach the top of a hill and exultantly exclaim, “Both my legs worked!” But when I got to the top of the full Issaquah Highlands climb, I couldn’t restrain myself. I rode that climb nearly every week for months last summer, and I know keenly how it felt before my surgery. This week I apprehensively anticipated riding that climb: Could I even get up a hill that big, the condition I’m in now?

This ride answered that with a definitive YES. Riding up it with two fully functional legs, even though I have a lot of fitness to regain, gave me so much hope. I had joined the Cascade CHEW ride and finished that hill with a perfectly respectable finish in the middle of the pack. And that’s just a starting point. Continue Reading >>

Waiting Patiently Is Hard

I don’t know how many times I’ve told Benji to please wait and be patient. Probably several times a minute. Thus I can fully appreciate the deep irony of a situation where my patience was stretched to breaking. Here’s the story.

On my morning commute, I ride the bus to Seattle since I don’t feel any need to commute by bike 21 miles twice a day. When I ride the bus, I get off at the first downtown stop, take my bike off the rack, turn, mount my bike, and ride away — directly ahead of the bus. So naturally I try to expedite the unload-and-go process, not wanting to hold up an entire busload of people any longer than necessary. If I use a backpack, I don’t have to worry about hooking a pannier onto my bike before I start riding. I can usually get rolling before the bus has finished loading new passengers. Continue Reading >>

Slippery Cycling

Yesterday we enjoyed one of the few genuinely dry days in a month of endlessly drippy skies. In the evening heavy rain fell, but overnight the skies briefly cleared, temperatures dropped, and all that wetness started freezing.

As I mentioned earlier, Saturday I spent with the family at MoPOP, a day very well spent. To get in my biking, I’d arranged to skip church on Sunday and join a Cascade ride led by a friend of mine. I knew I couldn’t keep up with the pace for long — the first hill would likely eliminate me — but that’s the pace I used to ride, and my goal is to get back there for this summer. There’s nothing like riding with faster people to get faster. Continue Reading >>


On this rainy, gloomy Saturday, my sister — in town for a little while from southern California — joined me, Ian, and Benji on a trip to MoPOP (

I’d never gone inside the building, despite having seen it lots of times, and I found myself unexpectedly delighted by its architectural whimsy. Yes, it’s ridiculous and pretentious, and not exactly what I’d qualify as beautiful. But it’s fun. Benji wants his room clad in organically curved reflective metal panels now. Continue Reading >>

Hiring Again

One of the writers at work left recently, and today we’re interviewing for his replacement. This brings back memories of last year about this time when we were interviewing to grow out team by one writer.

That outcome… Let’s put it politely and say the person we hired proved incompatible with the team and the work. The approximately sixty days she spent with us remain indelibly etched in my memory.

Needless to say, we want to — have to — do better this time. I found in the last interview that I’m really terrible at judging people. I assume the best and just cannot tell when they’re a bad fit. I hope this time I’ll learn from the mistakes of last time and judge more accurately. Continue Reading >>