Saturday, September 22, 2007

See Terry run. See Terry get confused.

OK, I didn't actually get lost. I just overshot. Two weeks ago, I enrolled in this group that trains people for marathons. They specialize in helping first-timers like myself. I am working toward running/walking the half-marathon at the annual PF Chang's Rock & Roll Marathon in January. We meet every Saturday morning at 6 (groan) and run an assigned distance. We run along the Arizona Canal and certain streets are landmarks for certain distances. I was shooting to reach 36th Street, which marks around 2.5 miles so that I'd end up going 5 miles round trip. Well, I kept looking and looking and people even told me that I was almost there. Alas, the street isn't clearly marked since it runs through a residential area. So, I ended up going four blocks over to 40th Street. So, basically, I inadvertently ran/walked 6.2 miles. I know it's good to be able to do that but I felt kind of lame being the last one to get back to the starting point. The program runners want me to consider changing to the full marathon later on down the line. But I think for now, I'll be sticking to the half.

Well, I have to think of something to do this weekend. Last weekend, I got so bored that I ended up just surfing the Web. It seems like I know a lot of people getting engaged. That got me thinking about how they say you can get "ordained" on the Internet really easily. So, I researched it and I'm not sure how authentic this is, but I think I'm a reverend now--at least in the non-denominational Universal Life Church. I have a "certificate" but I won't be heading to any chapel any time soon.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Labor pains

Did I have a holiday this week? Sure doesn't feel like it. Twas a very long week in the AP universe. First off, I know I haven't written in a long time. It's just nothing interesting happened, nothing worth writing anyway. Labor Day was pretty boring. That was the start of a very long week of really dramatic news stories. Luckily I didn't have to go into work on Monday.

Last weekend, two girls in Kingman, Ariz. (which is near the Nevada-AZ border) were riding behind their dad in their own All-Terrain Vehicle when they landed in the bottom of a 125-foot deep mine. Unfortunately, the mine was abandoned and had never been marked or cornered off. The girls, 13 and 10, weren't found until Sunday morning. The 13-year-old, Rikki, was already dead. Casie, the 10-year-old, was miraculously alive. I heard the ATV had landed on top of her. The whole thing just, from top to bottom, was the definition of tragic. One of our reporters had to drive out to Kingman on Sunday evening to cover it, which is like a four hour drive from Phoenix.

Then on Wednesday morning, we found out two girls at a University of Arizona (which is in Tucson, two hours from here) dorm got into some sort of altercation. One apparently stabbed the other and was going to make it look like the victim had committed suicide. The victim had filed a police report against her, saying she had stolen her stuff. The whole thing is so unbelievable. These girls were academic achievers, both from the Navajo Nation, and school had only been in session for a few weeks. How things got so bad or how the suspect became so mentally undone...there are many questions. I learned they both had MySpace pages. Thus, I spent more time on MySpace over the last few days at work than I ever have in my life. I was trying to track down close friends and leaving them messages for interview requests. No takers. Can't really blame them. But at least my having a MySpace page came in handy.

The week of course was topped off by a verdict reading in the trial of Mark Goudeau, who's suspected of being the Baseline Killer (he's one of the people who's homes I had to sit in front of during a hot August day last year. Yeah, not happy about that assignment). He was on trial only for two sexual assaults. He still has murder charges to face. But we had every TV tuned to that and I had to run down to the County Attorney's office to get reaction from a prosecution standpoint. Anyway, Goudeau's wife has gone on and on about his innocence, despite the DNA evidence. The guy has a very shady past--that apparently she got over. He once, while on cocaine, robbed a store and hit a woman with a barbell. Back to the trial, he was found guilty on like 19 charges. My very cool co-worker Chris has been covering Goudeau from the beginning. A couple months ago, he had Goudeau's wife come into our office for an interview and he was very fair and decent to her. And Chris is also an easygoing guy. Well, after the verdict, he waited outside to catch her for comment. This is how it went:
Chris: "So, Wendy, any comment?"
Wendy: "Hey, Chris, f*** off!"
So for the rest of Friday afternoon, we were all laughing and saying "Hey Chris, f*** you!" I was like, "I think we have the toast for your rehearsal dinner" (Chris just got engaged).
Well, I am so very glad it is Saturday right now and I'm just hanging out here.