Monday, September 14, 2015

M-Cubed for 9.14.2015

M-Cubed (Monday Morning Musings) for September Fourteenth, Two-Thousand Fifteen...a random smattering of thoughts that end up here on Monday morning.

- 14 years ago last Friday was 9/11/2001. George W was president (just barely), I was 3 months done with my first stint with the Navy and working in the shadow of Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs and we had barely a 5 month old. Then the twin towers fell, the Pentagon was attacked and heroism reigned aboard Flight 93 over Pennsylvania. As the years tick by, the memories don't seem to fade but the patriotism sure has. Remember how all of a sudden, our country felt united? I wish that stuck every day of the year and not just on days like 9/11 or July 4th or Memorial Day. I wish we were a "team" against radical "anything" and just loved each other like folks sharing a planet and the same air. That'll never be but it's a nice thought. For now, how about we each do our part one-on-one and strive to get along, shed the hate and love on folks? And no matter who sits in the Oval Office, it's still the U.S. of A. and a country to be mighty proud of. Pass that down, too, to tomorrow's generation.

- After morning services yesterday, we found ourselves enjoying the sunshine in Kent, OH, for the annual "Art in the Park" where artisans fill the hills of a local park along the Cuyahoga River and steel drums were playing. Saturday was constant rain so the reprieve was nice for the event and to spend some time as a family walking around. I'm a sucker for coffee mugs to hold my morning espresso and I feel like I scored big time yesterday. Here's my cup from this morning, a hand-made mug from Cathy Tietz Boring. I love it! It was fired twice in her kiln and the color dipping was done in between the two. Every mug she had was one of a kind and unique. So with a new addition, I must give up one (or two) from the cabinet. That shouldn't be too difficult.

- So Apple's main event was last Wednesday and it was, as Donald Trump says, "HUUUUGE!" It lasted 2hrs and 15min and they spent the bulk of their time talking about the new iPad Pro, the upgrades to Apple Watch, the new Apple Pencil (that works with the new iPad Pro), the totally overhauled AppleTV and of course, the upgrades iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. I was driving for a lot of it and streamed it over the speakers as I drove. But if you're like me, you don't have 2hrs, 15min to watch it all so you can find all of the info you need here at appleinsider.com or if you're more visual, go to Apple's YouTube channel and watch the video announcements they showed at the event. That's your best bet, honestly. A few observations: Apple is clearly going after the medical field even more. There are so many features built into AppleWatch and the new iPad Pro that favor the medical community and their presentations highlighted that. For the fourth-generation AppleTV, I see them cueing themselves up to sneak into the gaming community with how the new remote works. Pretty amazing, actually. All around, the new AppleTV is leaps and bounds over what I have in my living room. As for the new iPhones? Well, they did more than just slap an "S" on them. New faster processor and some sweet camera upgrades...but still an entry-level 16GB iPhone which makes no sense. That low-capacity entry level model needs to become 32GB...like yesterday...especially with the new "Live Photo" that will gobble up even more space. All in all, Apple appears to continue to fire on all cylinders and even created another new segment via the ApplePencil.

- Have a Subaru? Me neither. Check with me tomorrow and that'll change! Yep...I'm finally diving into All Wheel Drive and that ever-popular boxer engine. I already created my "badge"! :) Family, military, running, and pets. Unfortunately, no CrossFit badge exists. Hehe.

- If you read last week's M-Cubed, you may recall the veteran pinning I did of the World War 2 Navy veteran who was at D-Day off Omaha Beach. Well, this hero who survived the sinking of his ship and rescued a shipmate passed away a few days ago on 9/11. I still feel so honored to have had the opportunity to meet him, shake his hand and thank him for serving our country. Here's his obituary if you'd like to read it. He will be buried with military honors this Wednesday in Akron. (his obituary is a great read and tells the story from D-Day)

- If you're a fan of chocolate...of peanut butter...of pecans...well, you would LOVE this. The fact that my parents own a local ice cream shop doesn't help my waist line but sure does give me plenty of reasons to keep working out hard. The flavor is double chocolate peanut butter and it's all I ever order there. Sooooo good! Here is my favorite creation...don't eat the screen!

- Looking for another great movie to watch? Write down "McFarland USA" and be sure to watch. What a great film and a true story. Also in movie news, "War Room" continues to crush it! Top 3 over the weekend in their 3rd week of release. In case you forgot, it cost $3 million to make and early numbers from this past weekend put it at $39.1+ million so far. WOW. Go see it!

- A few weeks ago, everyone starting writing down goals at our CrossFit gym that were short-term and to be hit by October 1st, or else...burpees...lots of them. For me, I could only do one ring dip so I suggested 3 ring dips as a short-term goal as they have been so hard for me but I need to do them if I ever want to do a muscle-up. That immediately meant that no matter what I did on any given day, I was going to be up on those rings working. Well, I walked in really sore on Saturday morning from a tough week in the gym so what does my coach do? After I did the required warm up, he had me do a LOT of dips. I'll be honest...I wanted to lift and work the legs and give my upper body a freakin' rest! I didn't complain, though, and did as he prescribed, starting with a 15min workout with 2 dips at the top of every minute on the dip bar..not the rings. For the last 6 minutes, he raised it to 3 dips each minute because they "appeared" to be getting easier. (what?!?) Figuring I was done and walking to a bar to load it up, he said "25 more...on the rings." Pffft! "Ok." Well, I figured I'd be there forever, knocking out one at a time with the rare 2 thrown in from time to time. I remember being at 21 done and 4 to go and was going for 2 sets of 2 to round out my 25 and my day in the gym because I had to leave soon. I got up on the rings and no one was watching but after 2, I felt like I had another so I went for it...and got it! No one was watching but I told him, regardless, and of course, he wanted more so I did...again I got 3. It wasn't pretty and I'm pretty sure my head was tomato-red and ready to explode but I did it. I still feel it this morning! Once again...Coach Will knew what to have me do to reach my goal...over 2 weeks early. Would I have chosen to do 60-ish dips while still sore? Heck no! In other news, my wife also hit her goal of deadlifting 200lbs that same morning. We both killed it! "Way to go, Babe!" (the image here has nothing to do with dips...but strict chest-to-bars...something I have been working on every day this month. Getting closer and closer every day to getting these things done.)

- That's all I got, friends. Time to get the week moving and enjoy the beautiful, sunny week on tap. Have a GREAT week and remember this: when life hits you upside the head and you feel like you've hit bottom, you sit at a fork in the road. You can choose to soak in the misery of your circumstances and let IT kill you or you can choose to find the good in it, look up, persevere and find strength in those around you, your faith, and choose to overcome. Choose the latter!

Have a GREAT week!

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