Fart Bomb Review

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We know what you come to FuzzyCo for—hard-hitting reviews of novelty stink products and that’s what you get today.

Since making the video we’ve learned that, since you don’t actually have to worry about the “bomb” going off in your hands instantly, if you shake the bag after bursting the water sack then it’ll pop a lot faster (though still with plenty of time to toss it).

The Cricket

The Cricket is closing its run at iO Chicago tonight with a great cast: Pete Burns, Brendan Dowling, Kate James, Megan Kellie, Andrew Knox, and Dennis O’Toole. I’ve had great fun sitting in with the show and I highly recommend checking it out.

The show has a three-show coming up on the South Side at The Revival in Hyde Park: Thursdays December 3, 10, and 17 at 8:00pm. Details to come about Fuzzy Gerdes participation in those shows.

The Cricket - 2015-11-09 - Bad Vacations
The Cricket, 11/9/2015, “Bad Vacations”
(L to R) Peter Collins, Scott Goldstein, Greg Ott, Bumper Carroll (Zhukes Welder), Paul Grondy, Fuzzy Gerdes

The Cricket 2015-11-16 Cheese
The Cricket, 11/16/2015, “Cheese”
(L to R) Megan Kellie, Brendan Dowling, Michael McCarthy, Bumper Carroll (Zhukes Welder), Scott Piebinga, Susie Allen, Fuzzy Gerdes

Has This Ever Happened to You?

Darin asked for a link to “Has This Ever Happened to You?” and I realized that, in an odd turn-around for our “for more, please visit our website” world, it had only ever been shown on the broadcast TV version of Steve Gadlin’s Star Makers (Season 1, which is why it’s SD). We had needed 30 seconds more for a certain episode to meet our time requirements and so Erica and I came up with this non-commercial. For a later episode, we needed 16 seconds of filler and so Parker stepped in to proclaim her love of sports.

The Peripheral

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The Peripheral is William Gibson’s most science-fictiony book in a while, and that’s awesome, but in a way it highlights that character is one of his strengths. Even in this complicated, mind-bending story of the future (both near and far) and [SLIGHT SPOILER] prosaically manipulated pocket universes, the main thing that stands out are the distinctive characters.

FuzzyCo grade: A+

Monster Dash 10K 2015

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Monster Dash 10k 2015

A race review as a lightly modified email to a friend who asked “How was the Monster Dash?”

Yeah, the weather was pretty sucky. It was fine as long as I was moving, but as soon as I stopped running I started freezing. We had a friend doing the half-marathon who was about 30 minutes behind me and at first I thought we could wait for her, but after just a few minutes I was shivering and we bailed and headed for the car.


  • The jacket is sweet.
  • Lots of great costumes (though many under ponchos)
  • a 9:20am 10k start is pretty chill—didn’t have to get up at the crack of dawn.


  • The weather (not the organizers’ fault)
  • It’s that same stretch of the lakefront path south of Soldier Field. Yawn.
  • At the 10K turnaround, there was a sign that said “10K turnaround ahead”, a safety cone about 10 feet behind it, and no volunteer. Tons of people were trotting down the path, only to have other runners shout that this was the turnaround. I hate when I end up running extra. (Boo extra running.)
  • Refreshments afterwards were very disorganized—there was a really long line for chocolate milk, which masked that water was plentiful right behind that, and then snacks were up the hill in a different area. I guess there was beer, but I only saw the wristband station, not the beer.
  • All that said, I’ll probably still sign up for the Yeti Challenge—free Yeti hat!

Time: 1:05:10
Pace: 10:30 per mile
Overall Place: 387 / 908
Place in Sex: 138 / 274
Place in Division (M40-49): 31 / 65

Edgewater 5K 2015

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Last night Erica was getting ready to leave very early in the morning for the O’Hare 5K on the Runway that she was going to run with Claire Zulkey. I figured that if the alarm was going to be going off at 5 am anyway, I might as well see if there was a race I could last-minute register for in-town. I took a glance at the good ol’ Running in the USA page for Illinois and lo and behold, the Edgewater 5K was running for the second year. I should have remembered that it was run during the Edgewater Arts Festival, which is going on this weekend, but I’d missed the reminders in the Alderman’s newsletter.

So this morning after Erica left, I snoozed the alarm clock for another hour and then took a leisurely stroll over to the new pedestrian mall on Kenmore and signed up for the race. A lot of the bigger races discourage race day signup, but the Edgewater 5K seemed to welcome it—they had an entire Registration tent and seemed to have about as many shirts there as over at the Packet Pickup tent.

The race is a fundraiser for a bunch of different schools in the area and there are tons of kids in the race and mascots of many of schools cheer on the runners. The route this year more or less the same as last year: a straight shot down a closed Sheridan, a quick loop on the lakefront path down to the Foster Beachhouse, and straight back up Sheridan. In Edgewater, we’re lucky that we live so close to the lakefront path, but I bet most of our neighborhood runners have been down that first section of the path a thousand times. I really enjoy the kind of neighborhood run that shows off the neighborhood and it’d be slightly more interesting to me to have that kind of run here in Edgewater.

Fuzzy and the Senn Bulldog.

Time: 00:27:55.62
Pace: 09:00
Overall place: 107 / 506
Place in Gender: 79 / 232
Place in Age Group (M18+): 54 / 115

Bucktown 5K 2015

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What’s to say about the Bucktown 5K that I haven’t said the four other times I’ve run it? They had a nice jacket this year, so I signed up. Whee!

Time: 27:34
Place: 941 / 3334
Place in Sex: 591 / 1274
Place in Age Group (M45-49): 42 / 100

Happy Birthday, Latte

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Latte on her 21st birthday.

I have a terrible memory (it’s part of why I keep a blog—so I can look back and see when things happened) but I know that I got Latte and Mustapha sometime in 1994, probably in the summer or fall. A few years ago, when it was becoming obvious that Latte was getting pretty old and that each extra year was going to be something special, I arbitrarily decided that her birthday was September 1. Well, this is Latte’s 21st birthday. We plan on taking her out to bars and getting her wasted.

Latte and Mustapha

Chicago Triathlon 2015

I’ve been getting emails for months from the Chicago Triathlon asking me to sign up and ignoring them for months with the thought that things were just too busy to train for a triathlon properly. Then, in the sort of over-reaction I’m pretty good at, six weeks ago I decided to sign up for both the International distance in the Mountain Bike and the SuperSprint distance in the Divvy wave. If I trained really hard for six weeks, I thought, I might even be able to place in the Mountain Bike division. Only 12 people did the International distance Mountain Bike last year and I came in sixth. So, you know it’d be possible, with some training.

I didn’t train.

I mean, I rode my bike to work and got out for /one/ seventeen mile ride. And I swam a couple of times and did /one/ open water swim. And I did one 10K, really slowly. So I was set, right?

Surprisingly, it was the SuperSprint on Saturday that gave me the most trouble. The water was super cold and I wasn’t wearing my wet suit, just a neoprene vest that I haven’t worn for a couple years (nothing new on race day, Fuzzy!) that was a /little/ tight.

Chicago Triathlon 2015

I always encourage other people that anyone can do the 375m swim of a SuperSprint. “You can walk it,” I say. Well, I got out into chest-deep water and started trying to swim and got a little panicky. I couldn’t breathe, whether from the cold or the vest. I ended up holding onto a kayak, the first time I’ve ever done that in a race. The kayaker firmly informed me that I could stand, which I could, so I started walking and unzipped the vest, which made it awkward, but at least not tight again. I managed to swim a little in the latter half and got out of the water very mad at myself and embarrassed. But there were two more legs to go.

The Divvy leg was dumb and fun: the Divvy bikes are big and slow and not really made to go fast. It was raining a bit, but at least I wasn’t worried about wiping out with those big, fat tires. And then the mile-and-a-half run is just a quick jog.

Chicago Triathlon 2015

Chicago Triathlon 2015

The full triathlon the next day went a lot better. The minute I got in the water for the in-water start of the swim, I was happy that it felt just /normal/.

Chicago Triathlon 2015

And then I jumped on my bike and my right shoe wouldn’t clip into the pedal. I realized that I hadn’t actually done a test ride after changing pedals the night before (nothing new on race day, Fuzzy!). I had a moment of worry that I wouldn’t even be able to ride, but my shoe stayed in the pedal, it just meant I couldn’t pull on the upstroke and would pop out whenever I went over a bump. So, not a crisis, but annoying. (The next day, I managed to fix the pedal in about 5 minutes, so I wonder if it would have been worth it to stop and work on it on the day.)

After all that, the run was a breeze. Oh wait, a breeze would have been nice—it was suddenly very hot. But soon enough it was all over!

A bunch of photos by Erica

Chicago Triathlon - SuperSprint

Time: 01:07:48
Place in Division (Divvy Wave): 49 / 63
Place in Sex (Divvy Wave - Male): 22 / 25

Interval Time of Day Split Split Pace Age Rank Gender Rank Overall Rank
Start 7:54:01AM
Swim 8:07:49AM 00:13:49 03:41 min/100m - 24/26 58/62
T1 8:15:24AM 00:07:35 - - 21/26 50/62
Bike 8:45:04AM 00:29:41 13.19 mi/hr - 23/26 36/62
T2 8:47:24AM 00:02:20 - - 26/26 60/62
Run 9:01:49AM 00:14:26 09:17 min/mi - 21/26 38/62
Total 9:01:49AM 01:07:48 - - 22/26 49/62

Chicago Triathlon - International

Time: 03:50:53
Place: 2388 / 2632
Place in Sex: 1724 / 1837
Place in Division (Mountain Bike - Male): 6 / 9

Interval Time of Day Split Split Pace Age Rank Gender Rank Overall Rank
Start 7:59:00AM
Swim 8:46:04AM 00:47:04 03:09 min/100m - 1686/1,842 2358/2,639
T1 8:57:02AM 00:10:59 - - 1667/1,842 2384/2,639
Bike 10:33:30AM 01:36:28 15.46 mi/hr - 1749/1,842 2406/2,639
T2 10:40:00AM 00:06:31 - - 1733/1,842 2476/2,639
Run 11:49:53AM 01:09:53 11:17 min/mi - 1606/1,842 2209/2,639
Total 11:49:53AM 03:50:53 - - 1723/1,842 2387/2,639

Big Ten 10K and Wipe Out Run

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Fuzzy at the BTN Big Ten 10K

A couple of weeks ago, I ran the Big Ten 10K all by myself (I mean, there were a few thousand other people there, I just didn’t arrive with a friend). I turned it into a bobo-brick day by biking down and back, which is good for the triathlon I’m doing at the end of the month, but was a little jump in my current training level. Can I blame that for why I ran the slowest 10K I’ve run in quite some time? Sure, whatever.

Time: 1:10:20
Pace: 11:20 mins/mile
Place: 5637 / 8033
Place in Sex: 2965 / 3671
Place in Age Group (M45-49): 152 / 202

Erica and Fuzzy post-Wipe Out Run

That afternoon, Erica and I braved the sun to go run around the Cellular Field parking lot to do the Wipe Out Run. Last year the run came to town as the Ridiculous Obstacle Course and obviously wanted to be the Wipe Out Run, as their promo materials had tons of references to “just like a hit TV show” and so on. Well, they got their licensing deal and could now plaster Wipe Out branding all over their big red obstacles. The obstacles were pretty fun, though the course had plenty of twists and loops that were obviously intended to just wear us out between obstacles so that we didn’t notice that there were only 9 of them (one of which was just a wooden wall). But it was a ton of fun, especially the slides.