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Possible Monitor and Mouse Issues and a Less Embarrassing Half Marathon Run

Since this time around Micky just woke me up, for no reason that I can tell, and I have this already written, having finished it last evening, I’ll just post it now, before trying to get back to sleep. At least the monitor still seems fine, after its issues seemed to be worsening Monday evening, that area towards the bottom of the screen that sometimes has lighter streaks being much larger then, though it was fine again when I turned it back on after eating that night and so far it didn’t look like that again. Then again, it is 13.5 years old, and at the same time replacing it with a used similar one shouldn’t be a problem if and when it’ll be necessary. On the other hand, I don’t need to say what it means if my mouse will start having serious problems now that replacing it with an identical one seems out of the question, and Tuesday I actually thought I noticed a couple of double clicks, as in the left button doing that, though so far it didn’t happen again when I tested carefully.

Since I started with the most recent issues and only actually started writing this Tuesday, the post not being another one that was written piece by piece, I’ll continue with Monday. Actually, should probably first mention that Sunday I again tried to sleep in the evening, but only got about an hour in the first part, being unable to fall asleep again after waking up that first time, so after that I just wasted a lot of time in bed, admittedly resting. Was back in bed at 4:35 AM and might have just gotten about an hour and a half of sleep before the alarm rang, at 6:30 AM. With the forecast listing similar or higher temperatures and much worse wind the rest of the week, that morning was my best chance to run, so I had the usual stuff plus almonds, and those wheat things with jam as something sweet, drank most of the tea, which I had made before going to bed, and eventually went out at 8:40 AM. Unfortunately, only lost time on the toilet twice, and also struggled for quite a while to fit the bags in my tights, since I was going to go buy things after that. For that reason, also considered taking the regular shoes, but eventually decided to stick to the full running gear. It was sunny and the reported temperature at 8 AM was 18-19°C, the forecast for 9-10 AM listing 22-25°C.
Meant to really push from the beginning, hoping for a first lap in less than 15 minutes since getting back to the park, even if I was going to pay the price for it over the next two laps. However, when I thought I should have around 4:15, possibly even less, at the end of the first sector and instead saw 4:24, that was quite clearly a lost cause, and I was completely off the pace even for staying under 48 minutes all the way. It didn’t even look like I was going to stay under 48:30, and I was considering going for 16 km in that case, but it was going to get rather windy after 10 AM, and in fact there were a few gusts even while I ran, and I had to go buy some things too, so I pushed like crazy over sector three of lap three and the final sector and at least managed 48:19.45, with sector times of 4:24.55, 5:06.01, 5:54.06, 4:33 (4:32.97), 5:06.31, 5:53 (5:52.41), 4:34.47, 5:10 (5:09.76), 5:53 (5:52.64) and 1:46.27, making for lap times of 15:24.62, 15:32 (15:31.69) and 15:37 (15.36.87).
My right knee and left calf gave me some serious warnings from the beginning, but after the first sector that pretty much went away, though the knee bothered me again when I pushed in that manner, over the last two sectors, when I also suddenly felt a certain rather pressing need, though it wasn’t that hard to hold it in. As for people, there was just one moment, on sector two of lap three, when someone suddenly changed direction just as I was about to go around him, probably to avoid walking right past the toilets, in case somebody’d open the door just then, and the fact that somebody else was coming from the opposite direction just then as well meant I had to slow for a moment and just squeeze between them. On the other hand, another runner showed up in front of me just before the end of sector two of lap two and she was slightly faster, so I made it my goal to at least not let her get out of sight before the end of the lap. She stopped right after the bridge, on what for me was sector one of lap three, but by then she had passed a guy in a red t-shirt, who was also faster than me but only by very little, so he became the one I kept my eyes on, at least until I just gave it everything, becoming pretty much unaware of anything else. Rather doubt I’d have managed to stay under 48:30 without them.

Spent some seven minutes on a bench after that, writing down the exact times and the quick notes about the problems, then meant to head back to those I had seen gathering signatures for USR-PLUS, to lash out at them for basically ensuring that Sector 3 will remain in the grip of the current mayor, but it didn’t seem likely that I was going to actually be able to say what I meant to, so I eventually just got back to that drinking fountain to wash my hands a bit, put my mask on and went to that Carrefour, getting eggs, since I found cheap ones again, and leaving them in a cabinet.
Walked to that Kaufland after that, to take advantage of the day’s 40% discount for cabbage and cucumbers. Had just meant to get a small quantity, but the previous evening dad mentioned wanting to start a cabbage, cucumber, potato and beans diet, so I ended up buying a lot, plus two watermelons instead of the one I had initially meant to get, since I knew I won’t be able to carry everything in one trip anyway, especially considering the bags I had taken with me, having been unable to stuff more sturdy ones in the tights. The weight might have even ended up being a problem at the self-checkout, since I only knew that they say those should be used for a maximum of 15 items but the employee said that there’s a 20 kg limit as well and what I had exceeded that. Had called him twice by then, once because I had also taken some expiring bread, thinking it’d be for dad but now it remains to be seen, since he said he wants to eliminate bread as well and was going to take it to my mother, yet didn’t do that either. Either way, accidentally scanned one at full price, the discount sticker not having been placed over the actual bar code, so the employee had to override that, and then the fact that there are scales there as well somehow slipped my mind and I called him again because the label had fallen off the red cabbage I had bought for myself and I couldn’t even find it in the basket. All he did then was point me to those scales, but he also had a better look at all I had and mentioned that weight limit, though he also said that the machine might just allow me to get away with it, which it did.
Things got quite tricky after I finished scanning, however, since I meant to put everything back in the basket, then leave a part in a cabinet and carry the rest back to Carrefour and then here, returning later for what I had left. But I couldn’t do that because the guard stopped me from leaving the self-checkout area with the basket and I couldn’t even get myself to ask whether I could just take it to the cabinets and then return it. He advised me to leave the basket there and grab a cart from outside, but that’d have been entirely pointless, so I stopped there and tried to stuff everything in the bags I had, the problem being that I could only take one sturdy one and the other two were tearing as soon as I tried lifting them. The guard tried to offer me something at one point, probably some plastic wrap, saying it should be slightly sturdier, but I refused that as well and tried to walk out with everything as it was, at which point he opened the gate for me, so I won’t have to scan the receipt as well.
After leaving the cabbage, except the red one, and the bread in a cabinet, I struggled to walk back to Carrefour with the rest, the problem being that I had to hold the flimsier bag in an uncomfortable way to prevent the handles from tearing off, so I kept stopping until I tied the handles in a knot and gave myself a better way to hold it. Then I stuffed everything in a bigger cabinet at Carrefour, moving the eggs there as well, and had another look inside, grabbing a couple of expiring things which had appeared in that area by then. Unfortunately, cracked one of the eggs as I was trying to arrange everything in the bags after getting it all back out of the cabinet, but it’s a small crack and it seems like that was the only damage, though I stopped a few more times over the first part of the walk back, worrying that the eggs will be struck or pressed by something else until I found a way to carry them that seemed safe enough. Add a couple more stops to rest and it took me about half an hour to get back, getting here around 1:45 PM or so, having carried 16 kg just in my hands and with bags that made it harder.
Was out again a bit before 2:15 PM, having at least changed my shoes, if nothing else. Since I had seen discounted potatoes at Carrefour that were also large enough for dad to want, I kept meaning to go back there, turning this way and that a few times, but I just felt too embarrassed at the thought of going in there a third time, so I eventually just got back to Kaufland and retrieved the cabbage and bread. Since I had taken the backpack and the cloth bag I use for bread, I could have that bag with the bread around my neck, the largest cabbage in the backpack and one of the others in each hand, so that walk wasn’t a problem anymore… Even if I didn’t end up where I thought I would at one point.
Since I wasn’t struggling anymore, I thought to pass through the farmers’ market as well, but I guess I was pretty much on autopilot and ended up at the Dristor metro station instead. Still, that meant I could get to that pharmacy without really making any detour, so I did so, finding some things I wanted but somehow forgetting to get another nose spray as well while I was there. Then, since I had left my stuff in two cabinets from that Mega Image, I decided to have a look in there as well, ending up getting a couple of discounted pastries and a bagel, having calculated it so what I had saved dad on cabbage, cucumbers and bread ended up going into the ice cream I got from Kaufland and those. The cashier told me that the bagel was a more expensive kind than the one I thought, but that more expensive kind was also discounted then, so the difference was marginal and I shrugged it off, and when I looked again I realized that she was right and I had taken a different kind than what I meant to take.
Finally got back here at 4 PM, after having barely felt the 10 kg I had carried, with everything split in this manner. Still, after having been a bit more relieved when I weighed myself before the run and saw 47 kg, even if that included what I had been unable to get rid of in the toilet, the 45.5 kg I saw then got me worried yet again… And heating one of the pastries in the microwave and then trying to eat it quickly resulted in burning my tongue and throat a fair bit. And, since I have nowhere else to put this, I’ll also mention here that there were no visits recorded in either view that day.

Before getting to last week’s run, I’ll mention here that Saturday I grabbed BorderZone, being free on Indiegala and another game I had happened to glance at a few times on Zoom Platform. Seems terribly badly programmed, so I had put it out of my mind, but now that it was there I decided to go for it. The fact that the Indiegala version includes a readme.txt from Desert Law made it even more suspicious, and being unable to find the version listed anywhere made me wary of starting it, seeing as patches were released long after the game’s initial release, possibly by a developer working on his own time, the latest one I found being from 2015, so ten years later. Still, after posting a comment to ask about the version and receiving no reply, I went for it that same day, at first starting the Indiegala version, then applying that patch and restarting it. The patch includes additional texture and music files, a borderzone.pdb file that doesn’t exist in the Indiegala release and versions of audiere.dll, this file seeming to be the main reason why the game wouldn’t initially work at all on Windows 7 and newer, borderzone.exe and config.exe that are larger in size, running config.exe also presenting me with a list of resolutions that’s limited to what my monitor actually supports and includes its native one, which wasn’t the case with the Indiegala version. So, while I still have no way to compare the actual versions, it does seem that the Indiegala version is unpatched… This version still seems buggy to the point of being unplayable though, but I’ll see what happens, and some things that now seem to be bugs may just be oddities and quirks.

Still before actually getting to last week’s run, I’ll add that on July 25 I cleaned my room a little and changed the sheets, also finally putting away the blanket. Then, the next day, I tried to get a little more sleep in the evening, spending close to 3.5 hours in bed, but if I actually slept for one hour I’d be surprised. The attempt to at least give myself more time to digest what I ate at night also failed, as I only finished at 3:15 AM. At least I made the tea then as well, and got back in bed at 4:35 AM, managing to sleep rather well until dad got back and I woke up when I heard the key in the door, though that was in fact mere seconds before the alarm rang, at 6:30 AM. Then I had the usual stuff plus almonds, an old protein bar as something sweet, and drank all the tea. Also weighed myself, feeling much better when I saw 48 kg, and went out at 8:20 AM. Between the reported temperature and forecasts, I’d go with 23°C when I started running and 26°C when I finished. It was sunny though.
Yes, I did go for another half marathon distance, and the time was 1:46:41, with sector times of 4:21, 5:10, 6:04, 4:35, 5:08, 6:02, 4:34, 5:12, 6:11, 4:40, 5:18, 6:11, 4:48, 5:19, 6:16, 4:46, 5:27, 6:27, 1:54, 6:18 and 2:00, making for lap times of 15:35, 15:45, 15:57, 16:09, 16:23 and 16:40, plus 10:12 for the final portion. So I still didn’t even get back under 1:45, there were no good sector times except perhaps the very first one, all sector three times were poor and so was the last sector, but overall it certainly was much less embarrassing than the last time. Interestingly, this time was exactly the same as last year’s official time at the Bucharest Half Marathon, though of course that included the 1:05 start time.
Did sort of think of target times for 1:45 at first, but on lap two my mind was already on the targets for 1:50, admittedly aiming to have a very safe margin towards the end. And since after lap two it was perfectly clear that 1:45 was a lost cause, I just focused on that from then on. However, since I was slowing less than I feared, 1:49 looked very achievable after lap four, and after lap five I was quite clearly looking at 1:48. Still thought I risked hitting the wall, in which case that 1:48 would have required a mighty push, but if I was mentally prepared for that anyway, I just went for it on lap six, despite needing to manage the pain caused by that bone spur getting in a bad position again, and after sector two I started thinking of 1:47, becoming almost certain of it after finishing the lap. Even spared half a thought for 1:46:30 after the final portion’s first sector, and while it didn’t seem possible, I thought of it again after passing two other runners on the following sector. Realized there was no way for that to happen after calculating exactly what it’d require though, so I just stuck to what I could still do.
Since I mentioned those two runners, they were alongside each other when I noticed them in front of me, but when I approached the older man was left behind, the younger but overweight guy looking at me and trying to stay ahead for a little while, then struggling to keep up after I passed him. He was panting heavily and gave up after just a couple hundred meters, but that spurred me on enough to do those calculations, and it was probably why that sector was faster than sector three of lap six. That was the only notable moment involving other runners, though there were in fact plenty of them again, while probably the only more obvious issue I had with other people in general was on sector three of lap four, when I had to stay on the outside of a wider turn because of a cyclist that was on the inside and just barely faster, not moving ahead until some time later. Sure, there was some weaving and going the long way around at times, but it was quite fine, the park not being crowded. Otherwise, my right leg was already giving me some warnings on lap two and it got rather windy on sector three of lap four and much of lap five. That knee and everything above it only got better from lap five or so, but that was when that foot started threatening to cramp, and then, at the start of lap six, that bone spur got in a bad position and I couldn’t snap it back no matter how much I tried, so from then on it was a matter of managing pain, and posture so it won’t worsen.

Only got back in bed, really full after having just eaten, at 3 PM, but noise, first from outside and then made by dad, meant I hardly got any sleep, barely managing to fall asleep before waking up again, until dad left a few minutes before 4 PM, actually calling me at the time even though he should have known that I was trying to sleep. Peed and went back to bed after that, actually falling asleep after a bit and sleeping until 5:45 PM or so, when Liza woke me up. Went to pee again after a few minutes, just in case, and got back in bed at first, but at 6 PM dad got back and I got up for good… And I didn’t make up for the lost sleep in the morning either, being woken up by noise from outside a couple of minutes before 9 AM and getting up, wanting to go out and buy some things, and check out the day’s discount at Kaufland as well. However, decided to first eat quite a lot, so only left a bit after 11:20 AM.
First went to the farmers’ market, and since I was there I actually went to that Supeco before checking out the market, finding cheap bananas and carrots and buying some of each, since dad had asked for bananas and I had a plan for the carrots. Then I got plums and apples from the market, finally finding cheap apples again, plus some corn and tomatoes. Had 1.1 kg of tomatoes in the bag when I placed it on the scales to check the weight, and when I saw that I told the woman who was selling them that she could take one out, but she told me to leave it as it happened to be, because “we’re not a pharmacy”, and only charged me for 1 kg. On the other hand, a guy working in one of those little stores surrounding the open part of the market had apparently been fined for not wearing a mask, or not wearing it correctly, and was shouting angrily, plenty of others who were selling there joining in, also seeming angry over the measures and the possibility of being fined if they don’t respect them, asking each other whether those checking were still around, discussing how to get something from their doctors to be exempt from the requirements… That guy was also specifically outraged by the fact that he had been told to wear it correctly, as in over the nose as well, saying that “they” demand that so people will lack oxygen to their brains and become unable to think properly, though it seemed to me that he was already in that situation, without having worn a mask until then.
Either way, went to that Carrefour after that, leaving the purchases in a cabinet and looking around, checking prices and getting bread and a few onions. Since I had my card with me just for this purpose, Carrefour only allows paying by card at their self-checkouts, this bank’s machines won’t allow you to withdraw bills smaller than 10 RON and I had 24.65 RON left in the account after withdrawing the amount I purchased state bonds with, I carefully calculated the weight of those onions, ending up with a total of 4.64 RON for them and the bread and using the self-checkout there as well for once. Had no idea which way to insert the card in the machine though, and after two wrong tries it locked me out and the employee came to unlock it, and I fortunately managed to do it right after that. Then I tried to remember where that bank’s branch is in that mall, but couldn’t, so I picked one of the escalators and went up, then checked the map on one of the touchscreens and realized I had to go back down, since it’s right next to Carrefour, on the other side, right next to the escalator I didn’t pick. So I went there and withdrew 20 RON, just leaving 0.01 RON “lost” in the account.
Picked the wrong exit when I left that mall as well, so I had to go around it, then walked to Kaufland, at first just to check prices. Went to the toilet before leaving, and seconds after walking in the stall and closing the door I heard what sounded like somebody repeatedly bumping into the door. It didn’t sound like knocking, and either way I had just walked in and it should have been obvious that it was occupied, so I ignored it and did my business, but when I got out a cleaner was there and she said “you can knock until tomorrow and he won’t hear once he has headphones on” out loud, then pretty much stood there and stared daggers at my back as I washed my hands. I probably gave a surprised look, but otherwise ignored her and pushed and squeezed my way out, her cart being placed so it held the door open but at the same time blocked the way out.
Went to that Auchan after that, buying what I meant to buy and then taking a slightly different route on my way back to Kaufland and ending up rather lost. Lost some time as a result, but got back there in the end and got most of the things I meant to get from there, with the exception of salt. The kind dad wanted seemed to have the lowest price there according to what was listed on the shelf, yet it scanned at a price that was 28% higher, and 20% higher than it was at Auchan and Carrefour, and I was going back to Carrefour anyway. Didn’t look for an employee to complain, but warned a woman who was looking at salt, albeit having a different kind in her hand at the moment, when I put it back. In addition, the self-checkout machine didn’t like the black pepper I had bought, saying that the wrong item was placed on the scales, the employee trying to scan and place it himself as well and getting the same result, so he had to override the error.
As I already mentioned, got back to Carrefour after that, moving my things to a bigger cabinet and getting back in to buy what was left to buy, then spending quite some time trying to arrange everything in bags. Checked after I got back, at 6:45 PM, and saw that I had ended up carrying 16.5 kg, but had the backpack with me as well and that helped, even more so after I stopped and rearranged things again before leaving that mall, putting more of the heavier things in it. Then, even though I was after two days with much effort and little sleep, I only got in bed at 5:20 AM again.


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