For some reason, I have volunteered to run the NYC marathon...not being a runner, this may be another example of my historically bad decision making skills
Adopt a dog with no apartment
Eat clam strips from the Fireplace
Caribbean sun + Polerican skin - sunblock (this resulted in my flesh turning purple by the way)
Had it not been for Fred's Team and the opportunity to support Breast Cancer Research - i may have just sat this one out.
I don’t know what compels me to do such impulsive and irrational things - but I done gone and done it and now there is NO turning back...victory will be mine.
The Rub? I (Suzie "Speed Machine" Flores) need to raise $3,000 to do this - AND my running Partner in crime and slowness (Meag "The Bullet" Coomber) also needs to raise$3,000 for Ovarian Cancer Research!
We have $6,000 to come up with over the course of the summer...I wish I knew some decent people who would help us out - people who understand how important this type of research is - people who love Meag and I and have $25-$100 dollars to spare...But where does one find such people?
In the marathon planning - i have been weighing out the pros and cons...
Upside - I may lose some excess pounds
Downside - I may lose some toenails
Upside - Otis has been running with me in the mornings
Downside - Otis cant run more than 4 miles
Upside - Jay and Buka have been joining me too
Downside - They can't run more than 3
Upside - I can eat a lot of macaroni and cheese over the next few months
Downside - I have to run 26 miles in a row
Upside - I get to raise money for a good cause
Downside - i am actually going to have to do this.
If you or someone you know cares about Breast and Ovarian Cancer research - send them to our donation sites...Stay tuned for training updates and pictures of Otis being cute.
For your amusement, below is a pic of Meag and I after our 5 mile Haiti Benefit Run. Welles joined us at the finish line and immediately lost his mittens after this photo. Said mitten was recovered by Aunt Suzie moments later. It was a very exciting morning.
(Photo courtesy of James P Douglas - Jersey City's most Handsome photographer)
You would think I'd be thinner with those sweet sweet brown eyes looking up at me when i try and eat my macaroni and cheese.
But i am the picture of will-power. His eyes don't trump my love of cheese.
So Otis and Buka (and Jay) ran with me this morning for an attempted 4 miles. Buka put a stop to it once we were in Liberty State Park so i abandoned my running mates for the last mile. they didn't miss me at all. Not a one.
3 miles under my belt - 7 for the week - 5 more to go before Sunday...crap
My Mom is walking for a cure! Otis has donated and encourages you to do the same. 5 dollars works - just showing support for the little girl who died would mean a lot to Nikki's family, as well as to all the families that have to endure the hardships from having a loved one with CF. MOM
The soon to be sainted Mary ann Flores is also organizing a 10K in June as well for the same cause. Buka plan's on running for her Uncle Dan. I'll keep you posted.
Happy Birthday Bukins. It's been 4 years since you were born to what I imagine to be a very scrappy litter of pups. How you wound up at North Shore Animal league will always be a mystery, but I like to imagine you simply wanted more out of life. I picture you staring at your mom, brothers and sisters - with green goo from your infected eyes streaming down your dog cheeks like slimer tears - you look to them and look at the horizon of Long Island, and you knew that you were meant for more than this plabean lifestyle. You were meant to see the world - if not the entire tri-state area. You decided to break free from the conventional bonds of Long Island puppydom. You took the steps towards the rest of your life. You ran at full speed (roughly 2 MPH) to a meadow, where you are immediately caught by either a Guido or a farmer (i'm not to clear on that part yet) and handed over to the local authorities. But all was not lost...
Enter Jay, newly released from the Marines. His unconditionally loving sister hoping to help him find the perfect new best friend. He and Meag drive the long drive to the shelter and there you are. Sitting, contemplating your choices, wondering if you will ever see the one place you have always dreamed of...New Jersey. Your eyes met through the bars of your crate, you played hard to get, he made Meag pay for you and with that, two star crossed aquarians found their perfect match. You and Jay became the "it" man/dog combo in all of downtown Jersey City, and possibly the world. You walked by his side and stared at him lovingly - forsaking all others, pooping in Adams bed so as not to disturb Jay's slumber when you needed to go out.
That journey began 4 years ago this February.
Now you find yourself spending weekends on acres of land, eating endless amounts of deer / pug poo, barking at absolutely nothing, chasing goats, and being generally gross / happy.
I dont know if I have ever seen anything cuter. Not only that but its a great photo.
Anyway, these are our friends, neighbors and drinking buddies......Ginger and Goliath. Although Otis and Buka didnt get too far past the sniffing stage due to the extreme size difference...and Bukas love of pinning small dogs to the ground while they squeel and cry.
Before there was Otis, Buka was a bad influence on Dog Mattingly. He was (is) a great dog mainly on account of his responsiveness to commands and broken curly tail. He didn’t need a leash when being walked in the city, and would do whatever you asked of him on the first try (although this dog was a puker. The back seat of the impala holds proof of this). A few summers ago Jay and I took Buka and Matty to Branch Brook Park to see the cherry blossoms and let the dogs run around and smell things.
We found a little spot where we could lay in the sun and the dogs could prance uninterrupted by pedestrians or cyclists. This oasis was located at the bottom of a tiny ravine which was flanked on the top by roads that ran through the park.
After some football tossing and stick throwing, Jay and I began to sit around and talk rather than play with the dogs. They got involved in a game of “chase” where Buka takes off and Matty tries to catch her. Buka is slow, so in games of chase, she depends on her agility. Matty was closing in on her, so Buka hung a left. She began running directly up the steep incline towards the road. She was tap dancing in the street before Jay made it all the way to a standing position. I called for Matty to come down, and he immediately did. Buka reluctantly followed him.
What happened next was amazing. Jay was so annoyed at Buka that he made her lay down on her side and he spanked her. He literally smacked her about 2 or 3 times on her butt. When he stopped and looked up, there was an old German couple starring at him and cracking up.
Clearly Buka learned nothing from this experience.
Otis and Buka are doing well. They are enjoying there new vacation home in Lyme Connecticut. They prance though the expansive backyard helping themselves to the all you can eat buffet of deer poop as they try to impress Jay and I with a collection of disease carrying ticks. Somehow, their tick loving willpower has rendered frontline useless.
These “off the leash” privileges were discussed on the first trip my immediate ( and good-looking) family made to the farm house. I’ll try and recall the dialogue as accurately as I can: Jay: My mom said there are coyotes all over the place in Lyme. Suzie: Ok, well let’s make sure we keep the dogs on a leash at night time Jay: Sounds good (fast forward to when Jay has parked the car and is opening the door to let Buka out, keep in mind it is a very dark and eerily foggy night) Suzie: Jay, Buka chewed through her leash so you need to grab her collar before you let her out Jay: hahahaha…bukis….
Please note that at this point, Buka has taken it upon herself to bolt from the car. Jay is still standing, smiling, laughing at the destroyed leash.
Understandably, Buka was anxious to stretch her little legs and stumpy tail, and who better to do it with then what we thought was a pack a coyotes up to no good. On account of the fog, it was difficult making anything out past 10 feet, but the light from the house up the road provided just enough reflection to see Buka’s shadow running off among other large creatures…away from the house she has only visited once before.
Eventually Jay’s smile faded to a panicked grimace. The (commonly heard) screams for Buka began. I ran inside and turned all the lights on, knowing how much Buka loves wasted electricity, hoping my irreverence for the energy crisis would bring her back to us.
I’m not really sure there is a way to accurately impress upon you how terrified Jay was. There was a look in his eye that made me feel that if we didn’t find Buka, Jay would NEVER be right again. He was more than desperate. It twisted your heart to see.
He turned and yelled for me to get in the car and go look for her. I (with a very nervous Otis at my heels) ran into the car and made the slowest K turn in history. Otis was sitting shot gun. We pulled out of the driveway and left Jay, standing in the unlit country road, screaming Buka’s name.
I followed the road along side the pasture (front lawn?) that I last saw Buka’s shadow. I was honking and screaming her name (not at the same time). I rolled Otis’ window down and he whimpered and barked for Buka.
It was very dark and foggy, so I drove around 2 miles per hour. I hung my head out the window so my voice would carry farther. I drove for around 15 minutes on this road, and finally decided to turn around. I couldn’t hear Jay at all. I was praying he had her.
I pulled into a dirt road to turn around, and I see glowing eyes and the outline of flat ears tailing behind the car slowly. Otis made a happy bark welcoming his sister. Buka tried to jump in the car through the open window…unsuccessfully. I stopped the slow moving car and let her in.
I flew back to the farm. I rolled the windows up for fear of Buka trying to get out, so Jay didn’t hear my screams of “I have her”…he was still in the road calling her name. I finally pulled my motor skills together and coordinated speaking with rolling the window down. I told him I had her. Jay’s reaction was priceless. I am NOT exaggerating. He placed his hands to his heart and buckled at the knees. I thought he was going to fall to the ground in thanksgiving.
Despite the previous nights scare, Jay let Buka go first thing in the morning, but ths time she stuck around. She realized their was ample poo in the backyard to snack on.
It must be nice to be a Buka, you get to do whatever you want and are unconditionally adored by all.