Sunday, September 26, 2010

Where and Why I run

Actually, these are all in Brooklyn Center, MN.  In fact, they're all taken within a couple hundred yards of each other, and the Bridge, the Duck and the Puddle were within 50 yards.  The Bridge is one mile exactly from my house.  West southwest, if you care that much.

I took some pix at another park I like to run in, but none of those were as good as these.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Kent McManigal writes some pretty awesome stuff

I highly recommend him. Here's a 'graph from his article A problem with authority:
This man [who taught McManigal how to start fires with a bow drill] was an authority and he had authority. He didn't need to force anyone to behave as though he were an authority. There was no coercion and no implied threat. You knew he had authority by his actions and his expertise and his results. If he told you that you were doing it wrong, you would be wise to listen, yet he would have let you try your own way if you refused to follow his suggestions. Your success or failure was no threat to his authority. I have now started hundreds (or thousands) of fires in this way, and taught the skill to others, all thanks to one true authority.
I like the point he's making with that example and the brevity with which he makes it. This kind of authority makes the world go around. The other kind stops it.

Here are his article archives.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Equinox Wednesday

Get your robes ready.

Friday, September 17, 2010

I didn't know that

Robinson Crusoe Island

Robinson Crusoe Island (Isla Róbinson Crusoe), is the largest island of the Chilean Juan Fernández archipelago, situated 674 km west of South America in the South Pacific Ocean. The archipelago is made up of three islands, Robinson Crusoe, Alejandro Selkirk (not shown) and the much smaller Santa Clara.

Robinson Crusoe is mountainous, with a rolling, rugged terrain, formed by ancient lava flows from volcanic eruptions.

This mountainous island has a population of nearly 600, with all of them living in the coastal village of San Juan Bautista. To reach the island, the flying time from Santiago, Chile is about three hours.

The island was first named Juan Fernandez Island after the Spanish captain who first landed there in 1574. However, it was a sailor named Alexander Selkirk that made the island famous as he was marooned here for over four years from 1704 to 1709, and became the inspiration for Daniel Defoe's classic novel, Robinson Crusoe.

We visited the island in late January, 2010, and we have a series of Photos!
I sure I'm just displaying the deficiency of my education.  I wonder if he's related to the Selkirk who stranded a bunch of Scottish farmers (crofters) near Winnepeg.

Hey, I just happened to run across this article...  But before I mention that, I need to say something about the Tsunami that destroyed the village (of 600 people - all the inhabitants of the island -- Wikipedia has links to articles about it) back in February.  I don't know what to say, other than 'that's terrible!'  Only five people were killed, fortunately, but they've had a lot of work to do.

The article:
On my last day I climbed up from San Juan Bautista into the one area of pristine rainforest. Here, in the crater formed by the island's highest point, El Yunque, an anvil-shaped peak, lives this island's true treasure, a creature five inches long: the Juan Fernandez firecrown, Sephanoides fernandensis. It's a hummingbird.

The man who took me into the forest was Federico Pirol, a conservationist who had come to the island to count the nesting firecrowns. He believes there are fewer than 400; of these, perhaps only a dozen will be breeding.
Breeding has become increasingly difficult because the vegetation in the crater is being consumed by fast-growing, all-conquering maquis, colonies of brambles and shrubs. Pirola must weed them out, and it is a Sisyphean task.

"We need volunteers to come and help us," he told me. "The Yunque crater is the last original patch of rainforest left on the island, maybe 13 hectares or so, and if it dies, then so do these birds. Maybe English people would come here and spend some weeks in the crater. It will be a hard task for them. But they will be helping to save a most precious and spectacular creature."
So there are a couple of calls to action from Isla Robinson Crusoe.

Happy Constitution Day

Personal has an excellent test of your Constitutional knowledge.  I recommend it.

My favorite trivia question about the Constitution is: who wrote the 27th Amendment.  It was ratified in 1992.

Cool September days ROCK!

I just ran 7.5 miles in 67 minutes and I feel fantastic! 

It was about 60° F when I started and it headed down from there - and cloudy too, so I didn't have to deal with that nasty overheating that we big, fat guys are prone to.

After all this running, my legs look skinny to me and my extremities are fairly ripped, but my core is still quite well padded.  My clothes are pretty loose, but I swear to god I look just as fat as ever.

Today's workout was quite an extraordinary contrast to Monday's run, when I basically gave up after two and a half miles and ended up doing a hair over 5 miles in an hour - even stopping to walk for a couple hundred yards, but there were probably a number of factors at work there.  First and foremost is that I think I doubled up on my blood pressure pill that morning.  The main evidence for that is that, when I started walking my pulse was only 90 bpm.  That ain't right.  I checked several times.  Also, I was flippin' starving when I got home from work.  I had a bowl of cereal and headed out for my run at about a quarter to six.  I ran the first two miles pretty fast, though not as fast as today - and it was about 65° out, so that shouldn't have been a major factor - and - oh yeah! - it was only two days after a 20 mile run.

Even with all that, I felt much better after that run than before it.  I was tired for a while, but not bone tired like I had been since the run and all day Sunday, continuing into Monday.  I might have had a bit of an insulin dump into my system after ingesting the carbs.  I don't guarantee that claim. 

I felt weird while I was running fast, like I wasn't completely in contact with the ground.  That's another thing that makes me think it was an OD of the BP drug.  I remember taking one after starting to eat breakfast, but it's my habit to take one immediately upon entering the kitchen. 

I know I wasn't all that brilliant at work that day, but I don't think I actually effed anything up.  But, sometimes it's hard to say right away.  You find that out months later when somebody hands you the thing you made and you see dumb errors that you normally apply five fail-safes to avoid.  And, of course, then it's too late and you have to work with the thing they gave you.

Holy crap!  It's one AM!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I wonder if I would be the first to recommend to Tea Party

Conservatives and libertarians that they read the Annals of Congress
Debates and Proceedings
. The First Congress is the most interesting and it ends with the passage of the excise tax on Whiskey which caused the Whiskey Rebellion.

Here are the heroes and villains:

I have to wonder if the recorder of the speeches is responsible for their beautiful clarity, or if the speech makers themselves were that brilliant. I'm inclined to think that political pressure was applied toward that end. As it is today.

Friday, September 03, 2010

I've added Mike P's The Emptiness to my blogroll

I can't say as the guy's got a post that I consider a favorite. They all kick butt. Just start at his latest and work back from there. Actually, because of his brilliant use of the comic book images, that could easily be my favorite. (What were those guys on when they came up with Bizarro World?)

I deleted a couple more statists while I was messing with the blogroll, but I meant to add in Strike the Root and They'll probably be there when you read this, depending on how quick you are.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

214# this morning.

Cause for celebration. The oldies station is playing Three Dog Nights' "Celebrate!" right now. Coincidence?

I ran 8.35 miles last night in 81 minutes, running the last mile faster than the first. I wish I'd been in that kind of shape when I ran the 15K. It helped a lot that it was 75 and dry.