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Beaver Beatdown!

Beaver Beatdown!

PREGAME:

It’s another great day! It’s early, in Pullman, Washington. To me, this is the home of college football. There’s no place I’d rather be today, and I know some very cool places.

It’s the excitement! Muscle toned studs in their prime doing battle on the great American battlefield. So awesome! My competitive juices are already flowing, and I haven’t even had coffee yet. I’ve showered and shaved and trimmed and flushed, so I am primed. But, about that coffee…..

After a tough season, the Wazzu Cougars opened with what many called their worst game in years, losing to a lower tier team from Portland State. Doomsayers called for the coach’s head, projecting a dismal season. I only laughed. Though also disheartened by the sub-par effort, I knew a season is not about one game. I knew the Cougars were better than they showed. But how much better?

Well, last-minute victories over Rutgers and Oregon and a giveaway to Cal showed that these Cougars can play. How much more will they improve as the schedule toughens? That’s an exciting question whose answer will develop over seven weeks. Perhaps even weeks after that!

Family/friendly tailgates are special treats. I loved hanging with Nick and Jaslyn and visiting with so many cool people at Jim’s superb bash.

POST GAME:

Wow! We were treated to a half of Cougar offense that was near perfection. Luke Falk spirited the Cougar offense to six touchdown passes in seven possessions, plus a field goal. They moved the ball at will, executing beautifully on varietal passes and runs. Falk avoided sacks and found open teammates. The Cougars are so exciting!

Sometimes. They stumbled in the second half, after 45 – 17 at the break. They lost their edge, when they no longer needed it to win. The defense gave up a lot of yards, yet made great hits and plays. Special teams had success, like a fifty yard kickoff return, stopping a fake punt, and holding some kickoff returns in check. They also allowed a one-hundred yard kickoff return, a blocked punt and a muffed onside kick. But this win feeds momentum, excitement and imagined possibilities. Still, the Cougars must practice hard and play each play. Next Saturday’s game in Tucson is again pivotal.  GO COUGS!!!

About that being anywhere else thing.  Here’s a cool place I’ve been at least close to. Thank you great and powerful adventurers!

Is that Colchuck from Aasgard? Photo courtesy of Northwest Wildass Adventurers, Ltd.

Is that Colchuck from Aasgard? Photo courtesy of Northwest Wildass Adventurers, Ltd.

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Sometimes I fly like an eagle!

Sometimes I fly like an eagle!

Bicycling is cool cross-training. I can pedal hard for a couple of hours without feeling sore or overly tired. It’s fun, scenic, invigorating and healthy. What a win!

Weight-lifting leaves me sore, most often. It suggests a hint of masochism, mixed with egotism. Sometimes it feels great, sometimes it’s really hard. It always keeps me more fit, more youthful and better prepared.

Standup paddle boarding is a new addition to my life. It fits in beautifully with a self-propelled lifestyle, delivering great abdominal, back, arm and leg endurance training. It always feels adventurous to me.  Yay!

Nordic skiing has a very special place in my heart. I’ve skied into heaven on earth. The risk of cold, remote places is enhanced by beauty, adventure, invigoration, inspiration and wonderful endurance training. I love it!

Running is in my spirit, woven into my soul. It offers endurance or speed. Self-propulsion feeds self-confidence and a willingness to tackle new pursuits. Running opens doors to greater adventures, like awe-inspiring backcountry hikes!

Hiking with a heavy backpack, for many hours, feels like a marathon to me. I like that it makes me stronger. The process gets really tough. I learn mental discipline. I learn that “can do” trumps “can’t do” almost every time I really want it to.  The views are painted on the front page of the newspaper of my soul. Treasures!

Golf is the best game I’ve ever found. It challenges my mind in every way imaginable. It offers physical challenges in beautiful locations. It can not be mastered. I’m lured by the feeling of balls struck well. It’s been a busy couple of decades, but golf teases my spirit with a sense of impending reunion.

Volleyball is one of my favorite team games. It tests quickness, creativity, coordination and spirit. It’s fun to learn teamwork. Basketball and football are other favored team sports. The excitement makes these almost as much fun to watch as to play.

When I was a kid, riding my motorcycle was part of my daily routine. My bike gave me freedom and wild adventures. It got me high! I’m sticking with non-motorized bikes now, because I want to extend life if I can. But I still love to get high.

One way is water-skiing. Cold water slaps my face and everywhere else. Bam! The boat jerks hard, testing strength, balance and mental toughness. I rise above the fish and skim across the water, as free, wild and crazy as a teenager. Yeah! Hit it!

Annie and I hiked up Badger Mountain yesterday. We were considerably later than expected, as we should have expected. Isn’t that the way life goes? All of the reasons we were late were awesome!  We had great fun picking out shoes and “The Stick” with Heather at REI; she is so helpful and fun! Then a delicious Thai Spice lunch, with green curry and spicy chicken and vegetables:

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Then we restocked at COSTCO. Ever try racing through a crowd? So it was 4:15 before we left the car to tackle the mountain.  Here’s how fun it was:

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The mountain adventure fired our spirits! I’ve been getting increasingly stoked about running and other adventures! Thank you Heather and Annie! Annie was much stronger climbing the mountain than me; I was breathing hard trying to keep up. Then she started RUNNING up the mountain! She may be a little more ready for the Badger Mountain Challenge than I am, but I’ll be there and I’ll be fired up about it!  Here’s what adventures like this do for my spirit:

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The view just gets better as you climb the mountain, of course.  If you are blessed with delays, you might even get smiled upon like this:

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The sunset was magnificent! Pictures can’t begin to do it justice. We made if off the mountain, in the dark, around six o’clock.  Going with the flow gifted a wonderful show!

There’s a lot of time to talk during a ten-mile walk.  About two and one-half hours for us.  I guess that’s proof that Annie and I are talkers, as we didn’t stop!  Maybe that’s why we’re so similar?  We’ve heard each other’s ideas a bit!  The sunshine was gloriously uplifting!  🙂

Leg muscles can take a lot of use.  We pounded them pretty hard during Saturday’s leg workout, then walked ten miles on Sunday.  My legs felt tight at the start of the walk, but once warmed up, they felt like powerful pistons, driving me anywhere I wanted to go.  What a great feeling!  My legs and lower back were tight again this (Monday) morning, but a hot shower stretch felt wonderful.  I’m excited to work my upper body and do some moderate spinning today.  “Use it or lose it” gains greater meaning for me! 🙂

Eagle Cap from East Fork Lostine River Trail

It’s not every day I get to sun bathe on the top of a 9,572 foot mountain.  Glorious sunshine and amazing scenery gave splendor to my weekend.  Eagle Cap is a very special treat.  Yay!

The Matterhorn.

Packing a bunch of weight around is not normal for me.  Walking up a mountain is not normal for me either.  Walking up a mountain with a bunch of weight on my back requires desire, commitment, perseverance and faith that I can do it.  It didn’t kill me and it did make me stronger and richer, as well as more inspired, motivated and grateful!

Frankoshanko on Eagle Cap summit, fully alive! ( :

The hardest places to get to are often the most beautiful.  Mountain tops are wonderful examples of this.  Camping in a place where every direction offers heavenly views is a rare treat.

Lakes Basin.

On Friday, I’m hoping to get my first experience golfing the Palouse Ridge Golf Club with some of my brothers.  On Saturday the Washington State University Cougars take on the University of Colorado in Martin Stadium.  I’ll get chances to visit with family and hang out with Annie, enjoying fun, exercise and great food.  I think I’m learning to live my dream, little steps at a time.  ( :

View of glaciers from Eagle Cap summit, 9/16/12.

We explored abundant splendor at the Manito Park greenhouse, so our senses were stimulated.  The pleasing scents aroused us as the amazing sights and diverse textures captivated us.  Colorful joy burst from varied blooms and foliage.  We tired, so we retreated for a rejuvenating late afternoon nap.

Refreshed, the call of the wild drew us to the Little Spokane River.  Old growth Ponderosa pines towered above us, untouched by loggers, yet sculpted by nature.  Some were tall and magnificent, with trunks up to five feet in diameter.  Others were scraggly or broken, mangled and toppled, yet clinging to precious life, and telling wild tales.  The river meandered aimlessly, yielding to gravity and fostering life.  Just how much life, we would soon come to appreciate!

The setting sun was a magnet, drawing us along the trail in obedience to a higher power.  Wild turkeys spoke to each other, while reminding us of the majesty of creation.  Drawn to the gobbling, we approached several turkeys roosted high in the majestic pines.  From a distance, others spoke to them, in response.  We sat down to soak it all in.  Several whitetail deer huffed loudly as they pranced up the hillside.

Turkey talk continued as we admired stark silhouettes of deciduous giants.  As our souls quieted, the symphony of the forest came into clear focus.  Diverse creatures sang to us, announcing the beauty and majesty of creation.  We were in awe of God’s gifts to us.

Realizing the coming of darkness, we began our reluctant retreat as a chorus of frogs bellowed their delight.  We were truly at home.  Sharing these natural gifts was a treat beyond words.  Our faith walk to the car was elegant, not eerie, and it was capped by an encore eruption of frogs.  It was a fitting climax to a heartwarming experience!

Well now!  The experts say we can’t get to where we want to go if we don’t know where that is.  Or do they say we can’t get what we want unless we know what it is that we want?  Or is it something like, we have to go after what we want, to get it?  Maybe they’d say my memory lapses make my repetitive “ideas” seem original?  Whatever!!!  It feels right to take a stab at a bucket list, so here goes!  Thank you to Lesley Carter for inspiring me to assemble this post, which may prove to be pivotal in making a better me!  Trying to rank order them blows my mind, so they’re numbered only for reference:

  1. Live happily ever after, deeply in love!
  2. Visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
  3. Run a half marathon with Annie.
  4. Jump out of an airplane AND live to tell about it!  ( :
  5. Help people to smile and laugh every day.
  6. Make a hole in one.
  7. Be an inspiration to others.  Thanks Sherryl!
  8. Watch a PAC-12 football championship game in Pullman, WA.
  9. Watch the Washington State Cougars WIN a Rose Bowl.
  10. Purchase a fun, sporty vehicle.  Thanks to everyone who has tolerated Little Blue!
  11. Snorkel in Hawaii.
  12. Play with grandkids.
  13. Write a story that lives on after I’m gone.
  14. Eat great sushi.
  15. Do 12 pull ups in a row.
  16. Love those who persecute me.
  17. Dance at Nicholas’ (son) wedding.
  18. Swim with dolphins.
  19. Dance at my wedding.
  20. Live peacefully, contentedly, generously and socially connected.
  21. Write a popular blog.
  22. Help Eric solve the obesity problem, inspiring people to better their lives.
  23. Enjoy tea in England.  Thanks Bullu!
  24. See Niagara Falls.
  25. Fly in a hot air balloon.
  26. Do 50 push ups in a row.
  27. Record a great hackysack video of Nicholas & Annie & friends.
  28. See Alaska in person.
  29. Take a vacation in Italy.
  30. Take a Mediterranean cruise or vacation.
  31. Visit Australia.
  32. See Celine Dion sing live.
  33. Live a long, healthy life.
  34. Shoot great photographs.
  35. Hike more of the northern section of the Pacific Crest Trail.
  36. Write a collection of poems.
  37. Collect friends, including five-minute friends – thanks Katie!
  38. Grow fresh herbs & prepare gourmet meals.  Thanks Annie!
  39. Score three or more birdies in one round of golf.
  40. Earn a single digit handicap in golf.
  41. Catch a big fish, say 20 pounds or more.
  42. Visit each of the United States of America.
  43. Add to this bucket list………and get busier on checking things off!  ( :  I welcome any and all feedback, such as critiques and more ideas! 

frankoshanko

I love health, humor, adventure, exercise, romance and competition. Well, I just love life! ( :

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