Thursday, 15 April 2010

Miles: 37.24; Units: 25ish

A great week's running - really great. Topped off nicely with a strong long run at the weekend, just under 23 miles, and at an average 7.30 pace, with a very consistent pace throughout between 7.15 and 7.45. As it wasn't flat, this is especially good. I reckon that the Maidenhead 10 is starting to 'come into the legs' as they say. If I can have three more weeks like this, and then taper well, I will be as well set up as I could wish to be for Edinburgh.

Running related of a sort - and a bit of a rant, kicked off by reading an article on-line. It was, I am saddened to say, from the Daily Mail, which is guaranteed to raise anyone's blood pressure, however I came to it via the BBC website, and there were several other stories in a similar vein, so there is a theme here. The first line was "Women run marathons to keep their weight down, but men sign up for the competition, according to research". Nothing wrong with that, you might think - however, consider the 'but'. If you had used the conjunction 'and', think how different the sentence intent might read - it would make either choice seem valid. In my eyes the 'but' makes the male choice seem less positive, less 'right'. Now, I may be taking unreasonable umbrage at a simple bit of reader-demographic-focused writing, so that the mostly female audience at The Mail can read the article over morning coffee and chuckle knowingly to themselves about 'the way men are' in what they might see as harmless and entirely appropriate gender stereotyping from their point of view. Funny, though, how that sort of imbalance and sexism can be acceptable. Just imagine if the sentence had read "Men run marathons to fufil their potential, but women chat most of the way round the race and most don't push themselves as hard as they could". Again, sweeping generalisations..though I have seen that in my time. I reckon that would have them spluttering into their Mocha Skinny Latte...

..I was really off on one there - sorry! There's just a lot of very slight putting down going on. I find that I perceive a lack of balance there - as if it is ok to knock men as a group down a bit. I wouldn't mind, but (that word again) I rarely see an article in the same paper building us blokes back up again.

Anyway, back to more pleasant matters. No doubt buoyed up by the visit to Terra Vina, and as a reward for the long run, I cracked open a bottle of Haut Brion 1996. A perfumed nose, pure cassis, a bit earthy, with some coffee and tobacco. On the palate, a velvety texture of blackcurrants and maybe a slight hint of vanilla. Soft tannins, not at all obtrusive, howev
er this wine is still young, as you could tell that the fruit was constrained and brooding. A great life ahead of this wine - and more pleasingly 11 bottles still in my cellar. I don't have a wealth of experience of first growths- what I read says that Haut Brion always comes out of its shell only after 15 years or so. So, I will have to wait.

Finally, an excellent tasting note on this wine that links in nicely with my rant..."..the Germaine Greer of the First Growths: earthy, but sexy in a way that can't quite be described.". Well, quite. Pip Pip.

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