However, I do spend a little bit of time thinking about my own faults. I have a few great people in my life who help me out by pointing out some of my more obvious flaws to me :) I was fortunate enough to experience firsthand how some of those imperfections have worked out over the course of the week, and I can honestly say that I am not terribly impressed with myself.
To start with, one of my substantial limitations is my inability to phrase things properly. Words come out of my mouth often without adequate attention to the order and desired meaning, which frequently results in an impact ranging from misunderstanding to outright insult. I have been fortunate enough to have some of these situations pointed out to me, so at the very least, at my ripe old age of 35, I am more aware now than ever about how those words are interpreted and the impact they have. The next steps are to work harder on saying the right things at the right times and trying harder to avoid saying the wrong things.
On top of that, perhaps one of my bigger character flaws is punctuality. I am the late guy, always the last one to show up. Ironically, I don't mind waiting much, especially not if there is anything to do, and even if there isn't, sometimes the only downtime I ever get is while sitting around waiting for something or someone. Still, more often than not, others are waiting on me because I am late.
I never really put much thought into it, since I am capable of showing up on time every now and then, but it has become less transparent as I get older and associate more with punctual individuals. I like to think that part of my problem stems from growing up in Hawaii, where most people live in the present and don't spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about the future. But the reality is that I am bad at this aspect of life, bad enough that it has caused plenty of friction with people I care about. I never really thought of being late as being disrespectful until it was spelled out for me. Again, I am not about to suggest that I am anything other than a total screwup in this regard, but just like my inappropriate comments, I am learning to be more aware of what time it is and where I need to be next. I would like to think that awareness is the first step towards improvement, but I suppose results speak louder than intentions.
There are plenty of other ways that I've insulted, offended, and otherwise let down various friends throughout this week, this month, and this year. As July comes to a close, it is time for me to accept those shortcomings, to be cognizant of them, and to commit to improvement for the future.
The HURT lottery opens up tomorrow, and I plan to put my name in the hat. That seems much scarier for some reason than the Western States lottery which I've done for 2 out of the last 3 years, mostly because I assume the chances of getting in are higher, and partly because the course is just about as miserable as it could be. I'm not sure the race even qualifies as a run, it seems more like it would be a fast hike. But there is something about it that has stuck in my mind, since Rod first brought it up, and before that when I saw that first sign at Paradise Park on a run while visiting my dad, probably 7 or 8 years ago.
In that regard, I am really looking forward to Leadville. I have been told and read a fair bit about the race and the course, and it has a special place in my dark closet of things I am deathly afraid of. It should be humbling to experience it first hand. April 21st can't come soon enough.