a 7th grader hypothesized that fast food restaurants' ice would contain more bacteria than the fast food restaurants' toilet water so he tested his hypothesis and and was right! anyone who has worked in the food service industry knows the ice machines are colonized and rarely cleaned so i wouldn't be surprised if these results extend outside of the fast food industry. and in related news, handbags have more bacteria than a toilet seat ( if you have in infant, think about that the next time you pull out a pacifier ). obviously, we need a comparative study to determine which has more bacteria, the inside of a handbag or ice at a fast food restaurant?
holy moley, kim gordon of sonic youth fame turned 60 yesterday. happy birthday! i can't possibly be the only man or woman of a certain age who crushed hard on kim as a teenager in the 80s and didn't realize she was in her 30s? truth be told i might still have a crush on her and who wouldn't - from the elle profile - "In that moment, Gordon was the ultimate hipster Renaissance woman I aspired to be, a feminist rebel who could make avant-garde art all day, then cook a killer dinner for her family at night."#
i subscribe to the embodied mind thesis which posits that the nature of the human mind is largely determined by the form of the human body and central to that theory is the concept of neurotransmission. i.e. we perceive and think through sensory tranmsissions integrated and mediated by neurons. so it's remarkable to see new research done on mouse chimeras which indicates that lowly "helper cells" called astrocytes, not just the number of neurons and their interconnections, might possibly be the key to human intelligence. according to one researcher, "It’s a stunning result. It provides the first unequivocal evidence that astrocytes may well have been one of the evolutionary drivers of human capabilities." and if peripheral cells like astrocytes might play a key role in human intelligence, what other cells might also be involved like, say, in the gut? related to the embodied mind this recent radiolab podcast, "speed" has a segment "never quite now" where they discuss the slowness of neurotransmission which happens at about 27 meters per second or 60 miles per hour which means usain bolt runs at about half the speed of his nerve transmission and it takes a full 1/4 of a second for visual stimulus to reach the motor centers of your brain which is about the same time as it takes to transmit a telegraph from new york to chicago. everything you experience has already happened! you're stuck in the past! contemplate what that means when you're driving down the road at 60 miles per hour! somehow, in my mind, this makes me wonder what do whales see ( and think )?
so i’m standing, staring at the fridge wondering what i can whip together and a plan slowly comes together. a wonderfully tasty plan. a plan so wonderfully tasty that i can’t believe it had never occurred to me before – BACON AND BLUE CHEESE BREAKFAST TORTILLAS!
after a long, long, long period of serious unreliability from my “hosting with a human touch” hosting provider who i’ve been with for more than a decade ( who apparently has decided to not answer emails but i’m not going to name names), i’ve moved the vast wasteland over to amazon web services on the hopes that i can get back to better than 50% uptime and, you know, when you click on a link it will actually work.
it was relatively painless getting things running in the cloud, but my LAMP stack admin skills are a little rusty so let me know if anything goes BOOM!
while i was futzing with my backend, so to speak, i took the opportunity to finally bring back the logo which got dropped during a redesign a ways back for mundane reasons. who knew it would take me a few years to bring it back. hi. ho.
and i took the opportunity to remind everyone, front and center in the header, just how long i’ve been doing the vast wasteland. intertwingled SINCE 2000! it never ceases to amuse me that after 13 years the vast wasteland is still in the topsearchresults for the phrase coined by ted nelson to refer the complex of interrelations in human knowledge.
who knows, maybe i’ll even make an “about” page after 13 years.
update: right after i published this mysql crapped its pants. so we’ll see how this goes. might be a little bumpy while i tune things.
odin loves collecting special boxes to stash stuff in and at some point he got this box which is a souvenier commemorating a redwood empire railroad run on july 31st, 1931 loaded with 118 cars of redwood which was then the largest rail movement of lumber ever.
i assume, but have no idea if it’s true, that the box is made from redwood from that day? and i wonder when the box was actually made.
so i decided to take a picture of it and ask the internets because i’m sure someday someone will find this post and give me the answer!
i did find a cool black and white video on youtube circa 1930 which shows the redwood empire special chugging along with a sign on the side of the train that states “100 CARS OF REDWOOD LUMBER TO POINTS EAST” but doubt it’s from the same run.
so, i found myself in an easter church service and was bemused to open the program and find it done in none other than comic sans which is a font originally intended to imitate the feel of comic book lettering and is infamous for misuse which is chronicled on sites such as ban comic sans.
what will we do from 6-8pm on saturdays and sundays?!
i thought it’d be fun to see if i can still shoot clumsy video and skate at the same time while attempting to avoid the rink rats. is it just me or does odin appear to take out a kid on the ice as he races around the rink? whoops!
after skating around for an hour with his poppi ( yes, he still tolerates me skating with him for awhile before ditching me for his buddies ), it’s time for The Races!
and yes, he won again. but next year he’ll migrate to the next age group and have to skate against the 9 and 10 year olds. so this might be his last win for awhile. but maybe not, he’s pretty fast.
want to know what motivates a eight year old to win every race? the prize is rink concession food that he most certainly mostly doesn’t get at home
and so The Last Open Skate of The Season ends, with The Prized Nacho with Weird Cheese Food in hand and maybe just a bit of an attitude about his poppi taking his picture.
4 weeks after hitting the hundred pounds lost mark, i’ve lost 6 more pounds which means, through the magic of math, i’ve lost 106 pounds!
according to the BMI calculators, at 189 pounds i have a body mass index of 23 which puts me in the the 23rd weight percentile for my 6’4″ frame and also means i weigh what most other people my height wish they weighed. it also means i’ve erased 23 years of weight gains and now weigh what i did in high school.
truth be told, i haven’t really been trying to lose any more weight. in fact, i’ve been trying to not lose any more! i guess i’ll have to try a little harder. after running clear across the country i’ve been gradually cutting back my miles and have been averaging 25 miles a week, down from 45 a week. alas, it’s going to be tough but i’ll just have to eat a little more
after 5 weeks, i’m heading into the last week of the training and did 175 push-ups today, 480 for the week and 1,308 total. and i did 261 sit-ups today, 698 for the week and 1,970 total which is all a little mind-blowing since i could barely do 10 push-ups and 30 sit-ups when i started. progress! just one week until the test to see if i can do 100 consecutive push-ups and 200 consecutive sit-ups!
i guess it’s probably time for a before and after picture
normally at this time of year, we’re closing out another fun hockey season. the last games are played and the ice is melted at our community arena and we enjoy a few weekends with nothing much to do as the weather warms and spring sets in.
they have enough players and money to keep their ice year round and they had their first practice of the off season this weekend and continue through june! which means, in all likelihood, we’ll be gearing up for hockey on 80+ degree days. and it also means we’ll be making a trip to the big city twice a week and giving up a good chunk of our weekend days. but odin had a great time at the first practice running drills and meeting kids from around the area so that makes it all worthwhile.
i get asked every day how i lost lost 100 pounds and the shortest answer i give is that i ran a lot and a little less. at the time i hit the 100# mark i had run 2,357 miles ( as of writing this i’ve now run 2422 miles ).
and so it was finally time for the raffle drawing and, while we sure hoped somebody who bought a ticket for odin would win at least one of the prizes, turns out we didn’t sell any winning tickets.
but remember, everyone who bought one is a winner for helping odin to get a new malamute puppy!
i don’t want to name names because i didn’t ask if everyone was comfortable with being publically thanked, but thanks to all who bought a ticket. you know who you are and your generosity is very, very, very much appreciated.
i’m not exactly sure when we’ll be getting the puppy. i think it might be around june depending on how the breeding goes. i’m sure you’ll hear more about it in the future.
and remember, you’ll have 6 more chances to win a prize in upcoming school fundraising raffles, but i can’t promise we’ll get a new puppy every year