Automattic’s Worldwide WP 5k/Cookie Chaser 5k

Today’s post is a follow up to a post I made back on April 10th, when I blogged about Automattic‘s Worldwide WP 5k (or rather re-blogged a post originally posted by Sara Rosso of Automattic/Word Press. Basically that everyone was invited to run a 5k during the week of April 23-29 and then blog about it. (WWWP5k)

Well as my contribution I picked a local 5k – the Cookie Chaser 5k which is run in Riverton, Utah – a suburb of Salt Lake City. This race is a fundraiser to benefit the Girl Scouts. They also hold a 2k run/walk race that starts about 30 minutes earlier. A friend of mine from my running club (Salt Lake City Track Club- ) ran the 2k as a warmup for the main event. Others did as well.  As I didn’t make a final decision on this race until last minute, I was stuck paying the extra $5 for day of race registration. ($25) I arrived early enough (~8:00 am) to get registered and to get a short warmup in on the course. (1.54 miles in 14:17 – 9:15 pace)  I hadn’t run this race before, but had talked to some people that had. The course is relatively flat outside of just before the turnaround where lies a “dip” if you believe the road signs. Smallish hill, but enough to slow you a little bit. (down then up then the turnaround and back) I started near the friend of mine who ran the 2k first.

My splits:

Mile 1: 7:53
Mile 2: 8:02
Mile 3: 8:16
Finish: 24:19/24:20 by my watch.

This was good enough for 2nd place in my age group, just under 3:00 behind the 1st place runner who is also in my running club and ran 21:20.  I don’t know what kind of mileage he runs, but I know he rarely races longer than 10k any more. I on the other hand normally run at least one marathon a year.  So we have different strengths.

My placings fell out like this: 2nd in my age group, 17th Male and 21st Overall.  There were around 200 or so in the overall.  I had to leave before the awards ceremony was held so any age group prize I won I don’t have yet. I have an email into the Race Director on that issue. Overall I feel pretty good about this race, even though I didn’t run as fast as I was hoping for. Gives me a very general idea of what I might be able to do in my next 5k on May 19th. (Law Day Run 5k – held on the University of Utah campus beginning at the SJ Quinney College of Law). There have been two or three courses for that race over the years, my best on the current course is a 25:22 at last years race.  I am hoping to be able to run at least close to what I ran today.


Automattic’s Worldwide WP 5k

I thought I would invite everyone to join in this “virtual” 5k that is being held by WordPress. Let’s all get out there and do something! Whether you like to run, walk, cycle or something else.

The Blog

It wasn’t just a one-time event! The Automattic Worldwide WP 5k is back again in 2012! Set your timers for April 29th!

At Automattic we work from all over the world, and we use internal blogs for socializing and exchanging non-work ideas in addition to making and our other products more awesome. One of the things we’re really concerned about is staying healthy – we even have an entire internal blog dedicated to fitness.

We had a great idea: Get all Automatticians from 79 cities & 24 countries to run/walk a 5k on the same day! This way we can get some exercise together as a company even though we’re apart (though we won’t rule out a softball or Texas scramble at our next meetup).

A year later, and there are now 105 Automatticians we hope will take part in the 5k all around the world in 2012.

We want…

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Strange Visitor – A Christmas Story

Back in December 1979 I was a brand new missionary for the LDS Church (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints sometimes called the Mormons) This was sent to me in a package I received from home.  I thought I would share it with all my friends in Cyberspace. I didn’t write this and I don’t know who did. Please enjoy it.


            I had just finished the household chores for the night and was preparing to go to bed when I heard a noise in the front of the house. I opened the door of the front room, and to my surprise, Santa Claus himself stepped out from behind the Christmas tree.

He placed his fingers over his lips so I wouldn’t cry out. “What are you doing…? I started to ask, but the words choked up in my throat as I saw that he had tears in his eyes. His usual jolly manner was gone. Gone was the eager, boisterous soul we all know.

He then answered me with the simple statement of “Teach the Children.” I was puzzled. What did he mean? He anticipated my question and with one quick movement brought a miniature toy bag from behind the tree.

As I stood there in my night shirt bewildered, Santa again said, “Teach the Children.” My perplexed expression still showed in the near darkness.

“Teach them the old meaning of Christmas… the meaning that Christmas now-a-days has forgotten.”

I started to say, “How can I…?”  when Santa reached into the toy bag and pulled out a brilliant star.

“Teach the children, the star was the heavenly sign of promise long ages ago. God promised a Savior for the world and a sign of the fulfillment of that promise was the great star of the East. The star now reminds us of God’s love for mankind and of God now fulfilling His promise. The countless shining stars at night…one for each man…now show the burning hope of all mankind.”

Santa gently laid the star upon the fireplace mantle and drew forth from the bag a glittering red Christmas ornament.

“Teach the children, red is the first color of Christmas. It was first used by the faithful people to remind them of the blood which was shed for all people by the Savior.”

“Christ gave his life and shed his blood that every man might have God’s gift to all, eternal life. Red is deep, intense, vivid…it is the greatest color of all. It is the symbol of the gift of God.”

As Mr. Claus was twisting and pulling another object out of his bag, I heard the kitchen clock strike twelve. I wanted to say something but he went right on.

“Teach the children,” he said as the twisting and pulling suddenly dislodged a small Christmas tree from the depths of the toy bag.

Here was the second color of Christmas. “The pure color of the stately fir tree remains green all year round,” he said.

“This depicts the everlasting hope of mankind. Green is the youthful, hopeful, abundant color of nature. All the needles point heavenward…symbolic of man’s returning thoughts toward heaven. The great green tree has been man’s best friend. It has sheltered him, warmed him, made beauty for him, formed his furniture.”

Santa’s eyes were beginning to twinkle now as he stood there. Suddenly I heard a soft tinkling sound. As it grew louder and louder, it seemed like the sound of long ago.

“Teach the children, that as the lost sheep are found by the found by the sound of the bell, so should it ring for man to return to the fold…it means guidance and return, it further signifies that all are precious in the eyes of the Lord. Who is there among you if his son asks for bread will give him a stone?”

As the soft sharp sound of the bell faded into the night, Santa drew forth a candle. He placed it on the mantle and the soft glow from its tiny flame cast an eerie glow about the darkened room. Odd shapes in shadows slowly danced and weaved upon the walls.

“Teach the children,” whispered Santa, “That the candle shows man’s thanks for the star of long ago. Its small light is the mirror of starlight. At first candles were placed on the Christmas tree…they were like many glowing stars shining against the dark green. Safety now has removed the candles from the tree and the colored lights have taken over in that remembrance.”

Santa turned the small Christmas tree lights on and picked up a gift from under the tree. He pointed to the large bow ribbon and said, “A bow is placed on a present to remind us of the spirit of the brotherhood of man.”

“We should remember that the bow is tied as men should be tied…all of us together, with the bonds of goodwill toward each other. Goodwill forever is the message of the bow.”

Now my mind began to wonder what else old Santa might have in his bag. Instead of reaching in his bag, he slung it over his shoulder and began to reach upon the tree.

I thought he was hungry as he reached for a candy cane, purposely placed high on the tree. He unfastened it and reached out toward me with it.

“Teach the children that the candy cane represents the shepherd’s crook. The crook on the staff helps bring back the strayed sheep of the fold. The candy cane represents the helping hand we should show at Christmas time. The candy cane is the symbol that we are our brother’s keeper.

Santa then paused; he seemed to realized he should be on his way. Later would be his big day. As he looked about the room, a feeling of satisfaction shone on his face. He read wonderment in my eyes, and I am sure he sensed my admiration for this night. He was his old self as he approached the front door. The twinkle in his eyes gave Santa away; I knew that he wasn’t through yet. He reached into his bag and brought forth a large holly wreath. He placed it on the door and said, “Please teach the children, the wreath symbolizes the eternal nature of love; it never ceases, stops or ends. It is one continuous round of affection. The wreath does double duty. It is made of many things and in many colors. It should remind us of all the things of Christmas. Please teach the children.”

I pondered and wondered and thrilled with delight,

As I sat and viewed all those symbols at night.

I dozed as I sat in the soft candle light,

My thoughts were of Santa and all he made right.

To give and help, to love and to serve

Are the best things of life all men can deserve.

Old Santa Claus, that jolly old elf,

Is the very best symbol of Christmas itself.

He’s the sign of the gift of love and life,

The end of evil, the ceasing of strife.

His message to me on this pre-Christmas night,

Has opened a treasure of deepest insight.

The one thing on earth we all we all out to do,

Is the teaching of children the right and the true?

Crazy Singing Bird singing the Star Spangled Banner

Happy 4th of July everyone!

I hope you have all had a good 4th.

At my house it was a local 5k/10k race and a movie. My wife walked the 5k, and I ran the 10k. Nearly 2 minutes faster than last year (53:30 in 2010 and 2nd in my Age Group; 51:40 this year and 4th in my Age Group – the same age group)

As for the movie, Monte Carlo  – kind of a fun movie.

Don’t Let Anybody Steal Your Dream…..

This is a poem I wrote in October 1979. I thought I would share it. The original was written in a journal I was keeping at the time.

Don’t Let Anybody Steal Your Dream

Don’t let anybody steal your dream,

whatever it may be, and you will see,

That that dream can be reality.

So if you work hard and don’t lose that dream,

Then it will become a reality.

But don’t forget once again,

Don’t let anybody steal your dream.

For if you do you will be surely sorry,

For it is quite difficult to get back.