Friday, May 25, 2012

A Thousand (and Outta Here)

The time has come.

You’ve seen it coming and so have I. 

One friend said:  don’t stress it, just stop it.  Meanwhile, my brain said I had to give you an explanation of why I’m stopping it while my gut told me to not be an overdramatizing cliché.  In the end I wanted to write 1000 words for my 1000th post but then feared that might end up being tedious and nauseating to all of us.

(FYI:  It’s 754, give or take a few. Feels long enough, right? Right!)

So instead:   I’m hoping what comes out here on the Friday night before summer, from the 28th floor of the John Hancock tower looking out onto a purple sunset, strikes the balance.

Starting with me thanking you for reading this blog.  You did.  You let me overuse ellipses and sentence fragments and declarations starting with "and".

You tolerated my training for 4 of 9 marathons ... Boston, Philadelphia and DC and, almost, Stockholm.

You liked my legs. (1000 pageviews, baby.)

You read a whopping 43 posts about my insomnia, as well as all the ones I forgot to tag because I (obviously) hadn’t slept enough.

You sat on my patio with me at 1:24 a.m. and admired the basil and impatiens.  Once we listened to Jethro Tull together and I’ve not listened to them since.  (Have you?)  

You let me sell you on Charlie Brown and Secret Garden and Jason Robert Brown musicals and, occasionally, showed up at the shows.  You saw me buy my first piano.  You believe I can play the piano (don't you?), many without ever having heard me do it.

You tolerated my bikini challenges and my weight loss attempts and my cereal binges (and my copious apologies for them after the fact).   You tolerated 18 (and maybe more) Inexplicable Photos of My Feet and never asked why.  (Still inexplicable, BTW.)  You let me use the word penis as often as I wanted.

You heard me say kissing C-2 is better than just about anything in the world and didn’t throw up because of its idealism….or at least hid it from me if you have.  You didn’t chastise me for going back to him, and back, and back. You didn't know his name doesn't even start with C.  No, I'm not going to tell you what it does start with.

You didn’t ask for more information about the Man from San Francisco, despite my reticence to share details about him.  He is still in the picture, by the way. 

You didn’t give me a hard time for having (at least) 86 weekends where I was without a date.  Or for shamelessly transcribing OKC Instant Messenger chats.

You let me turn 36. Then 37. Then 38.  Then 39

You’ve met my mom.  Bobbo.  (The ever-awesome) Martha, on many occasions. The sisters older and younger.  Joshua.  JustinStudent Driver.  Balint.   Bill.  Cousin J. The CFO.  Many, many others.

You let me bitch about Southie.  And an ancient vehicle I refuse to replace.  And parking tickets.  And parking. 

You took my recommendations for good songs.  Sometimes for good poems.  You never told me if you liked them (or even read them) … but that’s ok.

You went with me to Hungary, San Francisco, west coast Florida, Minneapolis, the North Dakota prairies.

You tasted Pretty Things Baby Tree and PBR and homemade Altbier and Grain Belt and Left Hand Milk Stout and Guinness.  And Guinness.  And Guinness.  And Guinness.  And Guinness.  (Yeah.  Guinness should have had its own tag, I'm seeing.)

And for all that, what is there still to say?  But thanks.  For being my friends, my critics, my motivation for observing.  My motivation for drinking too much.  For staying up too late.  For whining.  For chatting with 21-year-old penis-pictures and female wrestlers.  For trying to be good at things.  For trying to get better and for trying to excuse bad habits and for never really trying to sleep enough.

I'm still (sorta) single.  Still thirty-something.  Still renting.  Still in Southie. 

It's time to go. 

You can write me at sage (dot) risotto (at) gmail (dot) com (if we’re not already Facebook friends) and you want to stay in touch.  I promise to write back if you promise not to creep me out.  I promise to tell you when the inspiration returns and when I start writing .... something ... again.

And with that, this blog is over and out.


Karin -- May 21, 2012

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Screenshot: An Analysis.

May 4 was the 4-year anniversary of this blog and this post is the 999th entry. 

But today I did something for -- I swear -- the first time in Single in the City's history:  googled

Not a software engineer or SEO-algorithm-type so perhaps there is logical rationale for all this, but still amused to learn from this search....

....A Mystery:  I have visited this page 4 times, last on January 8, 2012.
So it must not have been me who wrote the additional 68 posts this year.  Or the 931 posts prior.

....What's Popular:  The months January-August 2011 and my March 2009 post about Boston Marathon training injuries are seminal highlights.
The marathon post was one of two in the blog's history (the other: "Sexy in January? Inconceivable!", which might be the best title line I ever conjured) linked to the front page of The Boston Globe for a weekend.  It was also the last time the Globe touched me ... which leads me to wonder why, never, since? Prudes.

Furthermore: I spent much of early 2011 maundering about C-2.  While I should know Tales of Unrequited Love day after day is a fascinating trope.... still.

....That Kissing Makes Headlines:  Of the dozens of comments I've ever left on Evan's piece of the internet, it was my shameless plug about French-kissing that endures.  That, and me admonishing him about not knowing what a scone is.
Lovely.   Like teenagers swapping spit and insults.  For the record:  I've never either kissed (or, thank God, Frenched) with Evan.  He would undoubtedly reply with the same level of relief.

 ....And This Blog Doesn't, Really:   "In the United States, is ranked 2,653,720."  
Hmm.  I guess that's better than 2,657,672nd.

Click here to view full size


In case you're breathless with anticipation over what Magic Post 1000 is going to be....

Join the club.  So am I!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

A May Saturday

Five years ago, on the last Saturday, May 12 there was, we were all in Minneapolis celebrating with Kristin and Bill:

Happy anniversary, smoochers.

Saturday, May 12, 2007 turned out to be a mourning day, too.  That afternoon, one of my best friends from my Pipestone, MN days died at age 43 from metastatic melanoma.

Brad and wife Becky at his last Christmas (2006)

And this weekend is always the time to pay tribute to mothers.  I know at least 3 awesome ones near and dear to me.

Four generations:  Martha, Kathie, Missy, Henry (2008)

On top of all this, tonight we close the show after 3 months of fruitful collaboration.  The run has gone well.  I will be glad to see it go.  I will be nostalgic that it is over.

And, it is 80 degrees with a cloudless sky.

A worthy Saturday.  Amen

Friday, May 11, 2012

Up and away

My younger sister called me, unexpectedly, this morning.  Life has been busy for all of us, and we hadn't spoken in a couple months .... she called me on my birthday in March and left a voicemail that came in while I was at a rehearsal, and that might have been our most recent contact.  On that occasion she was joined by the boys:  Oliver then had just enough verbalization to say my name, not much more; on that message, Henry preferred to sing "Power Rangers rock!" instead of the traditional congratulations.

Look at those long legs and that utter sassiness in dinosaur pajamas.

Henry: 3.5    Oliver 1.5

They're growing up without me, that's for sure.  The length of time that has passed since my sister and I spoke had gotten away from me, too.   She's not the only friend I've started to lose track of in that sort of back-shelf, lazy fashion -- kind of like I'm losing track of keeping up with blogging -- and I'm glad a few things in life are slowing down this month and next, so maybe I can pull back all these drifting balloons worth gathering once again.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

What I found today....

....after not really looking at my OKCupid inbox for the last several weeks.
"hey! i figured I would take a shot at messaging you. I have always wanted to get to know a cougar for friendship and more ;-) and yes, before you ask, my girlfriend is totally cool with this. she knows this is a fantasy i have had for a while, and she is alright with the idea of me being with a woman older than myself. if you wish to talk to her about it, feel free!"
- - -
"Greetings from a French pilot at the Hilton Logan aiport.
I love the piano
I was a drummer before...
what about a meeting ?

- - -
"You do have great legs. Yummy :3"
- - -
"Oh you are so damn attractive and complicated. Permit me I really like you! From what I can tell from your profile. Tho an LTR may be an oft desired goal, Anything from that to a "longish short term Rel "(whatever that is, just sounds kinda cool) to a Mr right now is fine with me; companionship beyond my regular friends, serious flavorful hugs are sometimes life-giving, or so it seems at times, laughing at bad puns, good jokes, or just the whole jitteriness of life. After all, as someone way smarter than me said about experiencing life, essentially enjoy it cause no one gets out alive!"
- - -
"E.B. White is indicative of your style? That's not an easy thing to accomplish--God knows I've tried."

Friday, May 4, 2012

Fourth Anniversary (aka Post 995)

And, I still own and wear that dress.

*     *     *     *     *

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Must be the exposed collarbone ...

So I'm not married.

Meanwhile I'm 35, have two cats and don't own the dwelling I live in. These are some serious strikes in a city full of overachieving financiers, engineers and architects.

Boston has provided me with a random selection of dating options: guys sitting in the pews behind me in church; craigslist trollers responding to my posts for apartment roommates; the buffsters in polo shirts, met without verbal intro on dance floors after 12 or so "courage" martinis; the very occasional straight man in community theatre productions; the even rarer single man among the suburbanites in my office.

(The good news is that it is tremendously easier to be single in a city of this size. Easier to blend in, that is. I spent many years in small town in the Midwest and when you are 35 and not married, you are a constant object of speculation. Or perhaps you just think that folks are speculating. Or just wish they were and/or were providing you with dinner dates when inviting you over, rather than leaving you as the only single person in a room full of couples and kids.)

All these roads have led me to, or rather back to, After trying it last fall, then taking a 4-month hiatus, I'm back at it. Re-posted the profile and loaded-in a new picture....the one from my 34th birthday dinner with my sisters, showing a little collarbone and shoulder. (Hint: It's the photo attached to my profile here.) Added a tidbit about having run the Boston Marathon last month (working not to sound boastful) and how nothing is more satisfying than a long, hard yoga class.

So that was Thursday night.

One of the most fun features of is the counter that shows how many people have viewed your profile. Since then, I'm up to 171 views. Plus 6 "winks", or simply "hi, I'm here!" notices, and 3 straight-out e-mail messages. This is a huge rise in volume of views over last fall -- so I'm trying to figure now what caused the uptick. Must be the exposed collarbone.

But I knew I had to make the subject of the inaugural post of this blog yesterday afternoon, when a message popped up in my e-mail inbox with the title: "New Hampshire Calling." Woo-hoo! I opened it to find the following: my potential suitor is 73 years old. He likes to garden. He once studied at Harvard. He said I have nice legs.

My first thought was: wonder if he's rich.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

30 days to go

Gotta love the Swedes.  My favorite phrase on this instruction sheet:

FINAL NOTE:  Take it easy!  Remember that running 42,195 metres on hard roads is demanding.  Do not start unless you are entirely healthy.  Remember that there is no reason for embarrassment if you cannot finish the race.  Anyone can have an unlucky day.  Good luck in the 2012 ASICS Stockholm Marathon!

Saturday, April 28, 2012


Busy. Tired. Brain Dead.

That's me.

I just stayed at the office until 9:30.

I just biked home into the wind.

I just ate 3 servings of pasta and black beans.

It's been a long week.

I'm feeling unable to collate sentences longer than 10 words.

I keep thinking ..... I'll just sleep more.  And then I don't.  Usually it's because I want to take some of that time to talk to MSF.  Other times, I'm just too jacked to put my head on the pillow.

Oh well.  Aprils are often this way.  The end is soon.  Although May comes shortly thereafter.  After which there is a marathon to run.

Cousin J provided some needed perspective a few nights ago, though.  She was e-mailing helpfully with ideas for planning the Sweden trip.  At the end of which she said:
"So...big hug to you in this crazy week, I see you are at the apex!  Hang in and enjoy the ride!"
I appreciate the hug.  I more appreciate that I should enjoy myself more. Be it a 13-mile run tomorrow morning or the chance to practice on a real live piano some very fun music.   Fatigue is often the reward for a life well-lived, right?

Soldier on!  BTBD or not.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Procrastination is O.K.

I've known my friend Joy for many years and as speech-language pathologist, wife and mother of 2 toddlers, she's as bright and as practical as they come and rarely not on-the-go.  If not in the midst of cooking for friends or working weekends or making her own yogurt, she's organizing large-scale group activities for charitable organizations or her daughters' pre-school.  When she began blogging at Bundles of Joy earlier this year -- writing about her lif e as it is, much as I write about the down and dirty of mine --  I was unsurprised that the medium suited both her opinions and writing skills well.  It's been a lot of fun to read .... and keeps me up on her family's life when all of us are running in a million directions.

Joy is a busy lady. 

I'm usually not as busy as her .... but currently, in a way, I am.  This is the week in April that pops up every year and   I love so much:  the apex of time-sensitive deadlines at work and piles of pending reports-to-mail are as high as my head .... plus the point in marathon training where Saturday runs are 20-plus miles (and this year including trip-planning for Sweden that has been inexcusably back-burnered already) ... plus the point in the musical production where it's all coming together (open in 10 days!) and rehearsal is every night to 10:30 and that doesn't include the bike-ride home or making dinner after. 

Yeah. The week where I feel I don't know my friends anymore and realized I haven't spoken with my parents since mid-March or my younger sister since mid-February and my hands are swollen and my body over-caffeinated and it's only 10 a.m. and already I kinda wish this day was over and I was flat on my back under the covers

That said, I'm not now suggesting that I'm glad to read this entry from Joy's blog from a few days ago. (Joy set herself up promising a weekly Sunday post about her stewardship of various personal details.)  Just relieved that other busy people aren't shy about letting their fatigue show and relaxing the self-improvement regimen we often all impose on ourselves:
Sunday Procrastination Again

I should be writing a blog entry. But instead I'm watching back episodes of GCB and giving a doll a new hairstyle. Actually, I'm trying to make the doll look like she has hair again instead of a nasty frizz puff on her head. I promise to try to write more tomorrow....
And, most nights in the past 10 days, I've been playing Facebook Tetris and Solitaire Blitz instead of writing blog entries. 

So Joy ...... it's OK. 

I absolve you.  :-)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Running long

Stockholm on June 2 is (hopefully) my ninth marathon in 10 years.

I've logged between 400 and 500 miles in preparation for each, not including the races themselves.

Still, though....the first time in any training I successfully manage more than 20 miles on an outing (which was, today) running the length of Newton and then the length of Brookline and back out the entire length of the Emerald Necklace, starting and finishing uphill, avoiding sunburn and windburn and dehydration and boredom ... 

That this happens, and that life can continue after, still humbles the f*%& out of me.  

Find more Run in Boston, MA

(As does the water of Southie's Pleasure Bay in April.  Holy f@#$, indeed.)