My 2017 in review

This is my 2017 in review. I did this for 2015 and again in 2016.

Of note: my daughter graduated college (her accomplishment, not mine) and I completed my first year at a new rank. Athletically the year was a bit of a bust (no 5K under 27 minutes, only one marathon or beyond finish, best bench press was 200 lbs.) but I was active throughout and I did take some local trips. Of most note: I had a good time with friends, a “tl;dr” collage is here:







I am getting lapped by Jason (1:01:22)






Nick DeLuca of North Dakota State waits for play to resume against Illinois State during their football game Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017, in Normal, Ill.
Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor



December 31, 2017 Posted by | baseball, basketball, college football, football, Friends, NFL, Peoria, running, travel, walking, yoga | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chiefs win playoff game 4-3

Last night: we had a thrilling playoff game, that saw the Chiefs take an early lead, fall back, pull to a tie, and win it in the bottom on the 9’th with a single that bounced over the head of the infielder.

Here is a 9’th inning shot; the Chiefs had a runner on 3’rd with one out..notice how close the infield was. A walk put runners at 1’st and 3’rd, and then came the single.
The Bandits started a major league pitcher; the first couple of innings went by very quickly; then came the drama. The bullpen hurt the QC as they walked a lot of batters.

It was chilly; so I bundled up a bit.

Right now, the second game is being played in the Quad Cities (Davenport) and the third game will be played there, IF QC wins tonight. If the Chiefs win, we get more playoff baseball.

Workout notes

6 mile walk; my “on/off” (full on for the last lap; slightly longer “on” for the second to last lap) 27:00/25:54 = 52:54 for 4.2 miles. Glorious weather.

September 8, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking | | Leave a comment

Chiefs win regular season finale, Illini squeak by Ball State in football opener

So, this was a game of ends (of regular season, though the Chiefs have a playoff game next week) and beginnings (the Illini who will probably not go bowling this year)

Before I forget, I did start today with a 4 mile run in West Peoria (out and back); didn’t time but it was just under 12 minutes per mile. Ugh.


It was a tight 1-1 pitcher’s duel up until the bottom of the 6’th (when Quad Cities put in a relief pitcher) Peoria had runners at 2’nd and 3’rd with one out when the next batter struck out. But then came a double, 2 singles and a walk which lead to 5 runs. Then Peoria added a home run in the bottom of the 8’th to lead 7-1 going into the 9’th. The second Peoria relief pitcher took over and gave up a walk, single, walk, wild pitch, double to get Quad Cities 3 runs to close to 7-4, but the 3’rd relief pitcher got the 3’rd out.

Peoria plays Quad Cities next week in the playoffs; QC has the best record in the league.


Perfect day. The Illini were outgained 375-216 in yards (171 rush, 204 pass) and gave up drives of 80, 77, and 75 yards. But a miscue (fumble after a completed pass), punt return (4’th quarter) and a key sack with under 1 minute to go helped Illinois pull it out 24-21.

The first Illini drive went no where but on BSU’s first possession, they fumbled after a completed pass and the Illini ran the fumble to the 16 where the Illini hit their star wide receiver over the middle for a touchdown. A fancy 2 point conversion failed.

Ball State promptly drove it 80 yards to take a 7-6 lead.

But in the second quarter, it appeared that the Illini were taking control; two long drives lead to a field goal and touchdown and a 16-7 lead at the half.

Then came the third quarter, where the Illini did nothing and Ball state had drives of 70 and 77 yards. It was now 21-16 going into the 4’th quarter.

The Illini did nothing with an interception that was returned to the 30 and they missed a field goal with just over 5 minutes to play.

But late in the game the defense forced a punt and the star wide receiver returned it 52 yards to set up the winning touchdown drive (with 2 point conversion)

Still 2 minutes remained and Ball State drove it to the 33, when the Illini defense made a big sack. BSU got some of the yardage back but had to settle for a 54 yard field goal attempt with 5 seconds to go..the low kick was blocked. (though the refs missed a roughing penalty as the person who blocked the kick did not hit the kicker; it was another player).

The good news: great game between evenly matched teams. Bad news: Ball state won 4 games last year and are toward the bottom of the MAC.

The plays of the game for me were the punt return and the big sack.

Good crowd for the final Chiefs regular season home game.

We had to dress warmer than normal.

Love this fan’s shirt.

Football the next day.

Ball State on a drive.

Half time: high school bands with the Illini band.

September 2, 2017 Posted by | baseball, college football, football, running | , | Leave a comment

Chiefs “walk” one more step toward playoff baseball

Last night, my wife treated me to a Chief’s game for my birthday…birthday dinner was hamburger and fries! LOL…

The opponent was the Quad Cities Bandits, the best team in the league. And the first inning looked grim; the Chiefs starter hit two batters, gave up a double and two infield singles..and the infield made one official error (and one misplay)…and the result was an early 2-0 lead for the Bandits. The Chiefs got one run back in the 2’nd and it stayed that way until the 7’th, when the Chief’s reliever gave up a run. So it was 3-1 going into the bottom of the 9’th; the second Chiefs relief pitcher pitched very well.

But then the Bandits put in their second relief pitcher..who….walked 3 Chiefs in a row, sparking the Bandits into sending another relief pitcher. A long single scored 2 (catcher couldn’t quite hold on to the throw to make the tag on the second runner) so the Chiefs had runners on 3’rd and 2’nd with 0 outs. One Chief struck out and then they intentionally walked the next batter to set up a potential double play with bases loaded to preserve the tie.

But the next batter hit a chopping ground ball that went over the 3’rd baseman’s head to score the winning run…what a game!

In a nutshell, the Bandit’s “inning from hell” (9’th) was slightly worse than the Chiefs’ (1’st).

Workout notes yesterday, weights plus 4 mile walk: hip hikes, toe raises, rotator cuff, yoga afterward (with abs); pull ups (5 sets of 10), incline press: 10 x 135, 4 x 160, 7 x 150, military press: (standing) 10 x 50, 10 x 45 (dumbbell), 10 x 90 (machine), rows: 3 sets of 10 x 110 machine.

today; 5 mile walk; to W. Peoria, 8 laps (27:16, 16:10 for 43:26 for 3.3 miles of “on/off” walking), walked home. Yoga afterward (on my own).

August 31, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking | | Leave a comment

walking and baseball: Chiefs look like a team wanting to make the play offs

Walking: despite 20 yesterday, I felt ok this morning. So I walked 10.05 in 2:24:49; 2.52 segments were 36:20 out, 36:47 back (uphill); I was 1:14 at the dam after the goose loop. This was my fastest time on this course in about 2 years or more.

Ok, it wasn’t very fast; this used to be 2:10 during my “100 in 24 hr” days. Still, I was ok with it today.


I caught a couple of Chief’s game this weekend. On Saturday, they played well and steady and won 4-0 over a good Kane County team. Everything clicked: pitching, fielding, hitting; complete team effort.
Sunday: it could have been the same old story. The Chief’s first basemen hit his second home run of the weekend and the Chiefs were up early. But a rough 3’rd inning saw the first two Kane County batter hit home runs..back to back. But then the starter settled down to give 6 good innings and left with a 3-2 lead.

Then came the 7’th: the first relief pitcher gave up: a double, two walks, sacrifice fly, single, double …and 4 runs. He didn’t last the inning…rough day. So now it was 6-3 Kane County.

But the Chiefs battled back; good defense and 1 run in the 7’th and 8’th to trail 6-5 going into the 9’th as the rain started to fall.

They got the tying run on 2 errors: one to get the runner at first, then one error on a good bunt to put runners on first and second. A single scored the runner from second. A double play put a runner at 3’rd but a strike out send the game into the 10’th inning.

By then it was raining. The Chiefs held then got two walks to get runners on first and second. A ground ball moved the runners to 3’rd and second; hit batter to load the bases and a single won the game.

Upshot: Kane County made those two errors to give the Chiefs a window, and they went through it. Good, exciting comeback which saw almost all fans (save a dozen or so…me included) either leave or go up under the cover. I stayed in my seat..loved it.

August 28, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking | | Leave a comment

Errors eclipse Chiefs’ chances of winning

Two days prior to classes: I decided to make a noon baseball game (12:30 start due to rain) and an eclipse watching party (30 minute break in the game to watch). I had some old glasses from 2012.

In fact, this was my 3’rd Chiefs game in a row. On Saturday, we took Tracy and the Chiefs lost 7-6, despite a grand slam. 4 errors killed them.
Sunday: pitcher’s duel. The Chiefs won 2-0 but committed 3 errors.
Today: lost to Clinton again 7-6; a disastrous 2n’d inning which saw 3 errors and the Chiefs leave home plate uncovered cost them 3 runs, and the game. There were 4 home runs, 2 by each team. One of the Clinton home runs cleared the second green fence that was to the left and behind the large visual screen. One of the Chiefs homeruns hit that said screen.

Now games where you have 4, 3 and 4 errors all in a row…there is a problem. I noticed and said something…yesterday and today.

And my thoughts: well, that team that fielded so well is now at Palm Beach! (the “advanced A” Cardinals affiliate). Ok, that is an exaggeration, but the Cardinals are good about promoting the players and a few Chiefs have earned promotions this season. This can lead to growing pains for the team that is left behind. Ah, the life of a minor league baseball fan. 🙂

Workout notes: 4 mile walk yesterday. Today: almost full weight workout: rotator cuff, hip hikes, toe raises, pull ups (5 sets of 10: went ok), bench: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 8 x 170, incline: 10 x 135, rows: 3 sets of 10 x 200 Hammer machine, military (dumbbell, standing) 10 x 50, 10 x 45, 20 x 40. 2 sets of rope skips (16, 22), 2 sets of squats (50’s, 20 inch, windowsill).

Yes, I have a cold. So I drove to a game I normally walk to. Easy for the next few days.

August 21, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking, weight training | | Leave a comment

So so walk and the Chiefs split a pair of pitching duels with the Bees

Baseball: I got to see two long games. Last night, the game was tied 2-2 at the end of 9; the Chiefs lost 4-2 when the Bees got a couple of runs in the top of the 12’th.

The Chiefs were hurt when they twice loaded the bases but got no runners in. The Bees made 4 errors (very rare) including some puzzling errors on ground balls. But the Chiefs could not capitalize.

The Chiefs took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the 7’th and a closer took over in the 8’th..and so it was 1-0 going into the top of the 9’th. But some walks and a couple of RBI singles off of the first relief pitcher gave the Bees a 2-1 lead; the Chiefs tied it in the bottom; had some base runners but couldn’t bring them in.

Today: this time it was 1-1 at the end of 9 before a walk and a double in the bottom of the 11’th won the game 2-1. In this game, the bullpen looked sharp.

And we have a fighting chance for some playoff baseball!!!! The Chiefs are one of 3 teams fighting for 2 wild card spots.

One of Barbara’s sons and family

Saturday night: Chiefs lead 1-0 at this point and had the bases loaded..but failed to score. This cost them the game, I think.

The “Jump on It” part of the 7’th inning stretch.

Barbara arranged a group outing for the Saturday Night game. Great time.

Walking: I was a bit tired after yesterday’s 20.5 mile training walk and opted for a slow 10 (16 minute pace) today. I forgot that I had to build up to doing doubles, and I did a double last weekend (half on Saturday, 15 slow on Sunday).

August 14, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking | | Leave a comment

Addicted to baseball….

So, finally a day…but the Chiefs played a noon game and it is still summertime.

Ok, there weren’t many here to see it, but I had a first row seat and watched the chiefs win 4-3. Most of the damage was done on 2 home runs, one of which went across the street and drove in a second run. That gave them a 3-0 lead on Timber Rattlers in the second, which they held..though they tied it in the 6’th with a 2 run home run of their own. The Chiefs retook the lead with a solo home run and held it the rest of the way.

That made up for last night.

Part of my daily exercise was to walk to and from the game (about 1.5 miles each way; roughly 30 minutes of street walking each way).

I did lift earlier (after sleeping in):
rotator cuff, hip hikes, toe raises
goblet squats: 10 x 25, 10 x 50, 10 x 60, 5 x 70 (bench)
pull ups: 5 sets of 10 (good)
bench press: 10 x 135, 5 x 185, 8 x 170 (empty gym..didn’t push it)
incline press: 10 x 135
military press: 15 x 55 seated, supported (dumbbells), 10 x 45 standing, 20 x 40 standing
rows: 2 sets of 10 x 55, 10 x 60
abs: 2 sets of 12 twist crunch, 10 yoga leg lifts
head stand (not quite that steady but got it done)

overall, I am feeling ok, though it has been too long since I’ve done a long walk (18 plus miles): 18, 14 (RR half), 10, another half this weekend)

August 1, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking, weight training | | Leave a comment

low energy all around but life is good

I was sort of low energy today. I slept in..that felt good but I still had time for 10 miles:

My time: 2:33…15-15:10 mpm. Not much energy but I got it in.

Then I had lunch with Tracy and assembled a chest of draws for her; I am just terribly incompetent.

By the time I was done…I was tired and resolved to go home and rest..I had given up on making the Chiefs game; it was 5:45 and the Chiefs game started at 6:30. But I said…”what the hell” and left the house at just before 6.

I had time to get a ticket, get a cheeseburger and watch the game (3-1 Timber Rattlers winning; 2 run home run and then an insurance run in the top of the 9’th).

Contrast the above to the 7 dollar ticket that I got for Friday night’s White Sox vs. Cleveland game:

It was a full, if unproductive, day.

I have much to write about, re: my Chicago trip, but this trip, my nights were taken up by 2 White Sox games (one with a buddy) and travel. I also had a very pleasant lunch with a friend.

With Pat at the Cubs vs. White Sox game (Cubs won 6-3; good game though)

Our view (better than the other one)

Michelle agreed to go to lunch; I had not seen her since 1974 (in Yokota High School, Yokota Air Force Base, Japan). I played football with her brother Johnny.

I walked a bit; I did two Lakeshore path courses. This is from Northerly Island. You can see some of the skyline and Soldier Field.

From below the Shedd Aquarium

There was some great mathematics too. There were a couple of talks I wish that I had prior to teaching certain courses, and one that I wish that I had early in graduate school.

This is Dusa McDuff. She was the main speaker and gave three great talks. She is a professor at Columbia and..a member of the National Academy of Science (a very elite list, very elite; most Ivy league faculty do not make it). And yet..she rode the L to get to the airport. Someone of her accomplishment in, say, economics, would have been given a personal limo.

July 31, 2017 Posted by | baseball, Friends, mathematics, travel, walking | , , | 1 Comment

Chiefs matinee: beat TinCaps 2-1 in 12

If you like pitchers duels, this was your game. The starters controlled things; both went 7 innings and allowed 2 hits and 1 run each; the TinCaps starter struck out 8. He fired 95 mile and hour fastballs, but the Chiefs left fielder got a homerun. The TinCaps run came on a bizarre play; they got an extra base hit with a man on base who tripped coming around 3’rd. But the runner kept going and so you had 2 runners on 3’rd..the Chiefs tried to get one or both runners in a run down but got neither.

Bot teams stranded 2 base runners in the extra innings; it took 12.

opening pitch

12’th inning: most of the remaining fans were in the shade.

Winning: tell me the pros don’t care about winning.

Workout notes: I walked to and from the game (just over 3 miles total) and lifted weights:

hip hikes, rotator cuff, calf raises.
goblet squats: sets of 5: 25, 45, 50, 50, 60, 70 (good depth)
pull ups: 5 sets of 10
bench press: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 8 x 170 (low energy)
incline press: 10 x 135
military: 20 x 50 dumbbell seated, supported, 20 x 40 standing, 10 x 90 machine
rows: 2 sets of 10 x 50, 10 x 110 machine
abs: 2 sets of 12 twist crunch, 10 leg lifts, legs up the wall, moving bridge, head stand (on a harder surface)
Whole weight routine was “low energy”.

July 18, 2017 Posted by | baseball, walking, weight training | | Leave a comment