Things have been rough lately. Work's killing me, but some days I get to kill it back. Those are good days. Can't get any footing this time of year, though. We're all preparing for the fourth quarter where, idiotically enough, the music industry bails in close to 40% of their annual business and releases. Yeah, like no one's shopping for anything else in December but music. To call their wisdom infinite is a gross understatement. It's incomprehendable. So I get to spend the tail end of my summer planning for their fourth quarter which, ultimately, will fall far short of the one prior meanwhile we sit on our hands from January through June waiting for some sort of action. Geez, if it weren't for the Grammys or Michael Jackson dying, how in the world would we get anyone in through the door. Oh yeah, cheap CDs. That's right. And, boy, do we got 'em.
It's a fantastic business that can watch their profits slim at the rate of 15-20% per year and still not hold themselves accountable in any one way. It's kids downloading. It's Steve Jobs. Yeah, we still have a customer that'll pay $17 for Led Zeppelin and Beatles. Sure. They're just, uh, they're just out...uh...just trying to keep their head above water before the electric company shuts 'em off. But they'll recover and we can expect them to pay $17 once again. Yeah. We're down 15% ever year for the last five years, but we're going in the right direction. We know that it'll turn around.
I ran into a former employee tonight. Well, not really into, but rather walked by. Reminded me of the dinosaurs that, in some corners, still operate today. There's some folks in the industry that still believe that profits are expected, business will happen and good music is always worth buying. They buried themselves. They couldn't think themselves out of bed in the morning so you certainly can't expect them to drive an entire industry. I remember some cat reppin' Def Jux at NARM a few years back spoke of a world where music was all digital and the digital distribuion of music was the new reality. People would have virtual in-stores, all music would fit on the tip of toothpick and music in a physical form would become largely extinct. They boo'd and hissed. I remember hearing people afterwards saying, "He was a total dumbass" and "He didn't know who he was talking to." Who? People that rely on the physical good for profit? Maybe he knew exactly who he was talking to. I mean, no one really makes money except for the artist when it comes to digital. Record labels make nothing. Distribution is non-existent. It's run by two nincompoops in a room in Omaha. They needed the physical good, but since then, they've done nothing to innovate or perpetuate it. They've only done what they could to perpetuate their profits. Yeah, the foretelling at that keynote was not some Orwellian future where we all had flying cars and all had TV screens on the inside of our foreheads. Nah. The future is now. That being said, you can still sell $7.99 CDs to some cat. Still cheaper than downloading. And, when you hit $3.99, people don't even think. The wallets just open with gratuity. But $15.99? $24.99 for the White Album? C'mon now. You can't even fill up your car for twenty five bucks.
But I digress.
Trying to fix myself before I step into this training biz. We hit a three miler (tonight), four miler on Wednesday, three miler on Friday and then five on Saturday. It's like everyday, I hit a new personal record. My calves are strengthening, but must not have stretched well tonight. Still crampy. Taking up bananas. Still not totally with it, but man, I used to eat absolutely no fruit. Now it's an orange, apple and banana a day at the very least. Definite improvement.
As a commitment to my lovely wife, I told her I'd get my balky ankle checked out before going into this. Well, have yet to do that, but will do my best before the end of the week. I would think that "devestation" would be the best way to summarize my feelings if that was the end of it. But the training is intensive. Over the next 18 weeks, I'll do 72 runs equalling over 450 miles at the end of it. Someone asked me if I've lost any weight yet? Are you kidding me? Hell, I hope so, but you don't run 450 miles to lose weight. You do it because you're sick in the head.
So, the ankle will get checked out. Cracked a tooth down to the gum because I don't take out my frustrations by beating people in the face. Instead, I grind my teeth at night. We've talked about this before. Yes, I'm a bruxer. Grinding your teeth at night is so gangsta. So I'll need to cap it off or something. I kid you not...I haven't been to a dentist in well over ten years. No telling what that cat's gonna see when he raises the hood tomorrow. "So, does your therapist recommend eating cinder?" I used to be so healthy. Never had a cavity. Never broke a tooth. Never wore braces. I'll probably leave with a grill like Weezy.
Giving up on Red Sox baseball until I go to Boston in two weeks. Hell, that's about 12 days in counting. Geez!
Need to shave my neck hair. That has nothing to do with running, but everything to do with everything else. Playing softball two nights a week, jogging four. Sabbath stays holy. Growing the beard out during the training. Sure I won't be able to endure it too long, but as beards have almost a spiritual quality in my journeys, I'll likely own one until the day. Biblically, I believe to voluntarily remove one's beard is a display of mourning. In my case, it'll certainly be a display of arrival and then I'm gonna put a hurting on 26 miles of Dallas roadway.
Team Root Down needs two designs to move forward with for our shirts. I gotta contact (thanks, Wil) and will soon order shirts. Yes, Sarah, mediums included. Gonna try to sell them for a profit at $5 as opposed to a loss at $5. That profit will go towards the journey. Junk like a replacement for my Camelbak hydrator which I broke tonight. These Asics that I'm eyeing for the big day. Jogging shirts, shorts (yeah, the short kind), socks, Vaseline, magic jelly beans, etc. For such an elemental sport, this ish really adds up. Also looking at one of those 1GB Shuffles that just clip on with some nice wrap-over buds. Some of that money might also go to cover the registration costs. Likely one of the designs will also include a quote from my grandmother: "There are surely other things you can do that would bring that much satisfaction. I wondered why not golf? Any other sport."
I love her dearly. So, firstly, we have the OG, original gangsta design. I put this one up a long time back. I still stands as is. It'll likely be the entire front of the shirt as big as I can print it. We'll call this one "rootprints."
Then, one of my personal favorites for obvious reasons. We'll call this one the "Run, turd!" Fashioned after or appropriating for my own use, the old Run DMC logo's never looked better. Obviously, TRD stands for Team Root Down. We're still looking for members. Capable members. "I'm the king of rock, there is none higher!" This can be printed on white or you could go illy still and print it on black with the letters in white, but still with the red bars.
And then, lastly, you have the old Ride the Lightning look. Most likely would be white on black instead of what you see here. I was just too lazy. I think this one's pretty tight and, plus, it comes with the snazzy slogan. I usually avoid slogans, but was thinking something really needed to accessorize one of the designs. This one's for all my mullets and metalheads. All my Dream Theater heads. All my Megadeth peeps.