Michael J. Fitzgerald has been a journalist for 40 years, working as a writer and editor for newspapers, magazines and web publications. In 2014 he published the novel, "The Fracking War." In 2015, he published his second novel, "Fracking Justice." He writes or contributes to five blogs. He and his wife Sylvia Fox are the owners and principal partners in *subject2change Media, a multi-media firm involved in print, video and broadcast. He writes a weekly column, "Write On" for the daily 'Finger Lakes Times' newspaper in Geneva, NY. He was a journalism professor at CSU Sacramento from 1986 to 2011 teaching Newswriting, Column Writing and Magazine Writing.
SACRAMENTO, Calif., ALONG THE AMERICAN RIVER BIKE TRAIL - The bike trail is also the running path for a lot of people, myself included, as I struggle to knock off a few pounds so the clothes I need to wear for my latest consulting gig can be worn without holding my breath. The progress is slow and my May 1 starting day looms like a high school principal waiting for you to open your locker - the one where you stashed your beer for the weekend. Still, running for 35-40 minutes per day (depending on headwinds, the state of tired muscles and the previous evening's consumption of food and beverages) is helping. The muscles are coming back and even if the weight isn't that much difference, gaining a belt notch will help. Which brings me to the photo, from an interesting website (http://www.mcspotlight.org/) that if full of anti-McDonald's diatribes, but lots of interesting data, too. It reminds me of the excellent documentary 'Supersize Me,' which is enough to make you become a vegetarian. I mention Wal-Mart in the headline because if you travel the aisles of any Wal-Mart, you see the incredible deals: 40 pounds of potato chips for just $5.99! A gallon of Coca-Cola for just 99 cents (and sometimes 2-1 at that price). Plus all the little stations of fast, fried food for you to try as you wind through the aisles. No wonder we have trouble keeping fit. Which brings me to Big Oil. Even though prices have never been higher, the lines at the gas stations here in Sacramento look like the oil crisis of the 1970s. People are keeping those SUVs filled up. Never know when you might have to torque up to the mountains and hit four-wheel drive! Chevron just loves it. My run today was better than average and now it's time for the protein breakfast followed by a short drive in the 33-mpg Miata. The only downside is I have to wear a coat and tie today. I'm going to the Guvenator's office to get my picture taken for my press pass for my new consulting job. But I'll be back.