July 4th 2018 Firecracker 5K

July 4th 2018 Firecracker 5K

Flash and Jan at the July 4th 2018 Firecracker 5k

Jan Baby (the wife), Roxanne (the girlfriend) and I started our Fourth of July festivities on a scenic, flat and fast course in Fort Collin’s City Park. All ages and abilities were there and we took up our place at the very end of the start line; not the best way to start our July 4th celebration as we had to weave our way through half of the 1400 other contestants! I kept wondering how much extra mileage I was adding – how long would that curvy string I was running for a route straighten out to?! I think we would have been better off starting near the front and going out fast until some room opened up, then slow down to your sixties age group abilities. I was thinking about this as we first surveyed the start but the row of eight strollers put me off. I imagined they would fan out across the road, shoulder to shoulder and create the great wall of childhood. That scenario came into being at the back of the pack, so ARGH!

Jannie was going great guns and I was working hard to keep up with her. I was not on my game for this run, even though I thought I had done everything right throughout my training. I had to employ all my cunning cheats to gain any advantage. One of my favorites, cutting the corners with verve was proving to be quite effective 🙂  I know when things aren’t going great when I recognize that I’m not telling odd jokes to complete strangers during the run. I did blurt out to one woman; “I WANT YOUR SOCKS”. She yelled back at me; “You can have them if you’ll stop yelling at me!”. She had the coolest American flag decorated compression socks. Sadly at the end of the race, with 1400 people milling about plus all their support crews, I never spotted her to take her up on the offer.

We both finished in the middle of our “age group” pack. Actually, we were each one person towards the front of that pack. It’s not like us to settle for average. Jan finished in ninth place in the Women’s 60-64 age group with a time of 32:39. That put here in 812th place overall. Pretty impressive considering the sheer number of healthy young adults that were participating. I managed ninth place too, but in the Men’s 65-69 age group. Team Alexander finishes 9th. My time was just a tad faster at 30:59 and I had to go all out at the finish to make sure that old guy in front of me didn’t steal my thunder. Overall, that put me in 705th place. Funny thing after the race, that old guy sought me out to tell me how hard he worked to hold me off. He actually thought he beat me across the finish line. Doug, if your reading this, you finished in 32:09! See how delerious running can make you?

Snooze Eatery
Horse and Dragon Brewery

Next up is the Fort Collins Human Race, a 10K no less, taking place Saturday July 28th. We’re really starting to challenge ourselves. The Human Race is regarded at the best 10K in the Mountain West region. The event is hosted by Green Events and after having run about three of their events this year, I have to tell you what a great job they do. Each of the Green Events has featured chip timing and free donuts and coffee at the finish. They have a lot more vendors than the donuts and coffee people, but none of that other stuff appeals to me – unless the event has free beer! The Human Race is sponsored by Snooze (my favorite breakfast spot in town), Horse and Dragon Brewing Company ( I can vouch for great beer). There are other sponsors, but none that are more meaningful IMHO.

Cover Swing

Cover Swing

Fooling around the past couple days I came up with a fun CSS3 graphic. The first incarnation was a simple html page, but after some thought I decided to integrate it into a WordPress theme as a shortcode by adding to the existing themes functions.php file. This worked great and further motivated me to create a plugin as well.

Cover Swing CSS Fun

Usage: Use shortcode

Your Title Here

Your body copy here... More

Where cover = complete file path to your cover image, link = url to more info website/page/post, title = Brief title.

Now in three exciting flavors!

  1. Shortcode by adding to any WordPress theme.
    • Copy code in functions.php to your themes functions.php file
    • Copy css from cover-swing-style.css to your theme’s style.css file.
    • Copy images to your themes images folder. If one does not exist, simply copy the entire images folder to your theme folder.
  2. HTML – Requires no explanation.
  3. Plugin – Upload the plugin to your WordPress plugins folder and activate.


Raspberry Tea

You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me.
-C S Lewis


zip file download icon button

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind.
To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy,
is to have the real spirit of Christmas.
-Calvin Coolidge

Christmas Retro Muted Blues & Green

Another year has slipped by and and so here is another Christmas card. I’m including a link to a zip package containing my Photoshop file (CS6) and assorted assets created/used for this graphic.

May this Christmas end the present year on a cheerful note
and make way for a fresh and bright New Year.
Here’s wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Flash, Jan, Zac, Max & Molly the dog.

Download Zip Package






Before & After

Before & After

Before & After

…what happens when I get bored…

In my spare time I like to edit images of people, ostensibly to improve upon the original. I’ll let you be the judge as to whether or not there are improvements in the gallery below.

Editable Hang Tags

Editable Hang Tags

One of my favorites weekend morning activities is fooling around in Photoshop. From time to time I find myself lured by one or more interesting effects. This time it was grungy, well worn (thought not worn out) hang tags. It actually started when I stumbled across a Photoshop tutorial on how to create a well worn ace of spades playing card. This tutorial is a popular and one can view results of the tutorials students in various locations on the web:

View Tutorial View Kevin Chu’s Result View Lara’s Result View My Result

Where would the fun be if I didn’t provide my .psd. One never knows when something other than “SALE” might come in handy.

Download PSD
Free Bitcoin

Free Bitcoin

Who doesn’t need spare change from time to time. Starting right now you can mine your own coin with my Photoshop Bitcoin file. There are two designs to choose from, or edit my file and create your own coin design.

Bitcoin History

Bitcoin is an open source peer-to-peer electronic money and payment network introduced in 2009 by pseudonymous developer “Satoshi Nakamoto”. Bitcoin has been called a cryptocurrency because it uses cryptography to secure transactions. Digitally signed payment messages are broadcast to and verified by a decentralized network of computers all over the world. Specialized computers use a proof-of-work system to prevent people from copying and spending the same bitcoin multiple times, a problem for digital currencies known as double-spending. The operators of these computers, known as “miners”, are rewarded with transaction fees and newly minted bitcoins.
Grab Some Coin