A simple girl in a complex world




Saturday, September 20, 2003


Links of the Day

I've been collecting RSS feeds like some other intelligent/lazy folk, and I've assembled a pretty good list of diverse links of the day. I hope you enjoy.

1) Tuning Spork of BLATHER REVIEW links to Newsmax.com! Really, he does. Go see why.

2) Ith reports that a Seattle restaurant named 5 Spot gets a bit snarky by requiring patrons to sign a waiver exempting the eatery from weight-related damages incurred by the consumer.

3) The American Library Association lists the 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990-2000. Some surprises here.

4) Rosemary rips on Arianna! Get a seat up close.

5) Ravenwood offers an example of "the rules don't apply to x," one of my favorite themes.

6) DavidF at Sketches of Strain curbs the violence he intends for his modem. My favorite?

    Remember that you used dial up with no ill effects for three years.
I so hear you.

7) northstar of The People's Republic of Seabrook presents an insightful post about the leaking-money state of the NHL. As a hockey fan and follower, I agree.

8) The Agitator introduces me to the Broken Window Fallacy.

9) Deb Thompson of Write Lightning grabs another of my favorite topics and provides her viewpoint in Supplementing Stupidity. I agree, Deb. I've been known to wear my Question Society shirt at least once every two weeks.

10) My esteemed spouse offers suggestions regarding the 87 billion dollars spent on the Iraq war - if there were no war, we could MAKE MORE GOVERNMENT!

11) The Meatriarchy commends me for not talking like a pirate.

Thanks for stopping by.

hln



PETA Post

Amazing. I actually agree with PETA on this one (and its methods aren't even over the top here). Too many healthy animals are euthanized because there are too many companion animals available and not all are able to be cared for by humans. So, I disagree with the sale of animals by pet stores. I won't even go into puppy mills. I am and always have been one bleeding-heart animal lover.

But back on topic. PETA put out a press release on September 17, 2003 that targets PETCO and prompts it to halt the sale of live animals.

    This is part of a series of protests taking place outside PETCO stores across the country, all designed to give consumers the full story about the "pet"-shop chain—lawsuits, suffering animals, and angry customers. The activists will also be encouraging PETCO employees to blow the whistle on cruelty. PETA is offering up to $1000 for information leading to a cruelty-to-animals conviction for the chain.

    Date: Saturday, September 20
    Time: 12 noon-2 p.m.
    Place: 13750 E. Mississippi Ave.

    According to Forbes magazine, PETCO "has been embroiled in at least four recent court-related matters … charging animal cruelty or neglect." The city of San Francisco has filed a lawsuit to bar PETCO from selling animals there because of "the cruelty and pattern of brazen violations … [that] continued over three years." After years of receiving a never-ending stream of customer complaints—including reports of sick and injured animals who were left to die in their cages or placed in freezers to die, enclosures caked with feces, a lack of veterinary care, severely stressed animals’ cannibalizing each other, and staff members untrained in basic animal care—PETA has launched a national campaign against PETCO aimed at getting the chain to stop selling live animals and carry only animal supplies.

    Earlier this month, PETA, a PETCO shareholder, took its case directly to PETCO’s shareholders and board of directors. PETA filed a shareholder resolution calling on the chain store to stop selling birds, reptiles, fish, and other small and vulnerable animals—which, according to PETCO CEO Brian Devine, makes up less than 5 percent of the chain’s annual revenues—and urging PETCO to focus instead on selling companion-animal food, supplies, and services and expanding adoption programs.
And, because this is PETA, the issue will get some exposure.

hln



New Weblog Showcase Votes

I have two votes for the New Weblog Showcase. Please visit these new bloggers.

1) DFMoore presents More on Moral Relativism. This subject always catches my eye, and I'm pleased to see that DFMoore does it justice.

2) Ilyka Damen offers A Happy Epiphany, a post about reactions to the war, its outcomes, terrorism, terrorist groups, and opinions/views. It's quite powerful.

hln



JetBlue Hiring for PR Positions

Wired (and everyone else, really - I found one on the NY Times later) has an article about the JetBlue debacle.

    JetBlue Airways began sending out apologetic e-mails Thursday to customers who are infuriated that the airline gave 5 million passenger records to a defense contractor investigating national security issues.

    The form letter, provided by JetBlue to Wired News, confirmed a Wired News story that JetBlue turned over the names, addresses and phone numbers of its customers in September 2002 in response to an "exceptional request from the Department of Defense to assist their contractor, Torch Concepts, with a project regarding military base security."

    The e-mail was carefully worded to say that data was never provided to a government agency or used for airline security testing, that the sole copy had been destroyed, and that the Torch presentation was developed without JetBlue's knowledge. The company also expressed regret and promised never to turn over passenger information again without court order.
We're sorry. We won't do it again.

    The letter will not be placed on the company's website, but will go out under the name of JetBlue's CEO, David Neeleman, said JetBlue spokesman Gareth Edmundson-Jones. The e-mail closed with, "I am saddened that we have shaken your faith in JetBlue but I assure you personally that we are committed to making this right." Jones added the company was "flabbergasted" when they first saw the Torch Concepts presentation.
You'll get a better taste if you read the whole thing.

That last sentence I quoted is a bit damning, really. It's the presentation that bit Jet Blue the worst, not the provision of the data (which was against JetBlue's privacy policy), according to an earlier Wired article. Worse yet to the public, Jet Blue isn't apologizing for its actions of handing over customers' data; it's apologizing that the action was made publicly undeniable by the presentation.

It's sad, too - another blow to the airline industry.
JetBlue turns a profit.

hln



  

Friday, September 19, 2003


Classical XXX! Hot!

Wahoo! No commentary necessary...yet. (Link).

    Handel Masterpiece Gets 'Explicit' Label

    SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - George Frideric Handel has at least one thing in common with Eminem and other modern artists: his music was slapped with an "explicit" warning at Apple Computer Inc.'s online iTunes Music Store.

    The baroque composer's 1742 masterpiece, "The Messiah," was marked with the red warning that indicates the content might not be appropriate for young children or others with sensitive tastes. It's on a recording by the London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by John Alldis.

    The warning, which appeared when the album's tracks were made available Tuesday but disappeared late Tuesday, was most likely a technical mix-up, though "The Messiah" does touch on love, violence and death - in a more profound way than, say, most music produced 260 years later.
Hey, look out for that Water Music video. Steeeeamy!

hln



A Positive Step

I was very pleased to read today about the trend of hotels completely disallowing smoking.

    From New York to California, small and mid-size hotels have gone smoke-free, cleaning, deodorizing and redecorating rooms once reserved for smokers and designating them nonsmoking.

    One major reason is that fewer guests are requesting smoking rooms. But hotel managers point to other benefits: lower room maintenance costs and a marketing tool at a time when the business has been hurt by a sluggish economy.

    "In all of our publications, we promote a smoke-free environment, and we've gotten calls because of it. Families with kids, it's attractive to them. It reinforces cleanliness and safety," said Chris Canavos, manager of the 98-room Howard Johnson's in Williamsburg, Virginia, which went smoke-free during a renovation three years ago.
Roughly 75% of the population is composed of non-smokers. I'm obviously not sure of the percentage of sympathetic-to-smokers nonsmokers, but since I'm not in that group, who cares?

This is an excellent example of positive change (this time in the health arena) brought forth WITHOUT LEGISLATION. As time proves that these hotels do not disappear due to shrinking profits, other businesses will follow suit.

And that, my friends, makes me smile. Very broadly. (And breathe more easily).

hln



A Thought for Spring

Hey, if they can have the Axis of Isabel, we mid-staters should align our blogs as the Axis of Tornados (but we need a more clever name). I'll bring this up again, in, oh, April or so.

hln



That's. Just. Great.

    SAN DIEGO - A fire that destroyed three homes under construction early Friday was the work of a radical environmentalist group, officials said. Investigators are also looking into a second fire at another construction site.
Yeah, great. The zombies of the Earth Liberation Front are likely behind this latest mess.

Hey, zombies. Just where do you live? Caves? Tents made of grape leaves. Really, I want to know.

Alan of Elegance Against Ignorance has more.

hln



Gently-Bash-Liberals-With-Rational-Thought Night

I found two gentle but accurate pokes at liberals and decided to begin a post of themed links here. This may or may not get updated throughout the night as I do or do not find more.

1) The Yeti offers two links to Liberal "Rules" for Arguing. And they're dead on.

2) Michael Williams of Master of None writes about Idealistic Fools and chides thus:

    The problem I have with most "liberals" (i.e., leftists) is that although they aren't purposefully fascist, they seem to think that they can bring about an "ideal" society -- utopia -- by forcing people to behave properly. Christopher, who writes in the comment section (and blogs here), isn't ill-intentioned, but he doesn't want to face the reality that many of his positions are untenable, and many of his policies are impossible to implement; in the attempt to create the utopia he desires, he would instead bring about the wholesale elimination of the freedoms he values.
Indeed.

hln



Talk-Like-A-Pirate Day

I refused to talk like a pirate today, but I will offer you Frank J's Know Thy Enemy: Pirates.

    Jolly Ranchers have no relation to the Jolly Roger... that I know of. To be on the safe side, though, if you see a bunch of Jolly Rancher wrappers lying about, be prepared for a pirate attack!
(Link found via Jennifer's History and Stuff, though I shouldn't admit I visited her before Frank, now, should I?)

Also, Blackfive's got a quiz you can take to find your niche in the pirate hierarchy.

hln



Glenn Reynolds' Favorite Book

Glenn Reynolds' favorite book is Hands, Hands, Finger, Thumb, by Al Perkins.

The cover should tell you why.

Rumor has it, I tore this book to pieces when I was a wee lass. Of course, it was in support of Frank J. that I destroyed the monkey. Even though young Frank was not yet born.

hln



Links of Lunch

Phew, just a few mins, so these'll be brief:

1) Romulus of Judicious Asininity unveils the Secret Weapon in the War on Terror.

2) The new Hunting of the Snark is up! The aforementioned post by Romulus is in it (as am I).

3) Jennifer has a new War Message. Do be sure to click on the Message to Ethel. This behavior will not be tolerated.

4) Pixy Misa of Ambient Irony delivers the best pirate speak phrase I've seen yet. Shiver me disk drives!

5) Hans is never coming back from Seattle.

6) Victor of Publius & Co has a post showing some Isabel damage.

7) Aaron at Free Will explains Illinois.

8) The Meatriarchy expands a headline. Pun warning - not suitable for everyone.

9) And, finally, Big Arm Woman shares her thoughts (which are close to mine) on the likes of Extreme Makeover and associated surgeries/human body "enhacements."

And now, back to work.

P.S. JOIN THE ALLIANCE!

hln



  

Thursday, September 18, 2003


Cathexis

John Cole waxes insightful regarding his feline companions. And it's delightful.

    When I reach down to rub their bellies, I am usually bitten. When I work on the computer, I am usually greeted with the perfectly placed southern end of a northbound cat- this is Tunch's idea of giving me affection- cat booty in the face while I am trying to read. When friends come over, the cats ignore me and do none of the entertaining things they do when no one else is around- making me look like a liar and a fool. When I finally go to sleep, my cats either decide to play on top of me, or start meowing about something or another.
hln



Doom! The World is Ending

No, really. Instapundit is #2. What IS this? What quest awaits us as humanity? What demons must we slay?

(Frank J., is that you?)

hln



Monsanto: Taking Yourself TOO Seriously

Yesterday, Overlawyered posted Monsanto vs. Free Speech and has this to say about its title.

    The giant chemical and agribusiness company is suing the Oakhurst Dairy in Maine "for promoting its products as containing milk from cows who are not treated with artificial growth hormones. Monsanto, which makes the leading artificial hormone for cows, said the marketing implies that there's something wrong with milk from treated cows, even though studies show the milk is no different than milk from untreated cows." (Edward D. Murphy, "On the front lines of free speech", Portland Press Herald, Aug. 31; Kristen Philipkosky, "Sour Grapes over Milk Labeling", Wired News, Sept. 16). As the Press-Herald's Murphy suggests, this kind of suit can work very similarly to one like Nike v. Kasky in chilling controversial business speech, the difference being that in this case one business is doing it to another.
Wow. The marketing IMPLIES there's something wrong with milk from treated cows.

I've posted about Monsanto before. I also regularly consume soybean products from a company named GeniSoy, and GeniSoy labels everything it produces (at least the things I consume) as GMO free.

Monsanto, where's this going to end, buddy? What do you hope to prove? Your brand is not attacked by the growth hormone statement. If labels were mandatory, this information would automatically be shown on the product.

hln



  

Wednesday, September 17, 2003


Conservative Exercise Secret

Hey, I'll share an exercise secret with you. The idea is to get yourself in a mindset so that you can do NOTHING else but exercise. How, you ask? The good old-fashioned adrenaline rush, I answer.

1) Pick up a Ted Rall column. This one will do.

2) Tell yourself you're going to fisk it (before reading).

3) Read and fisk at the same time. Like this!

    NEW YORK--What kind of world would it be if someone set your car ablaze because it guzzled too much fuel? A better one, argues the Earth Liberation Front, a loosely-organized ecoterrorist organization that spray-painted environmentalist graffiti such as "gross polluter" and "fat, lazy Americans" on 30 sport utility vehicles at two car dealerships and set fire to a third on Aug. 22. Several SUVs and 20 Hummer H2s were destroyed. On Sept.2, 22 more SUVs were trashed at a Houston car dealership. (Police have arrested a man in connection with the California incident.)
Okay, fact. That's fine.

    Ecoterrorism expert Bron Taylor of the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh, says that ELF believes "that ecosystems have an inherent worth that cannot be judged in relation to human needs, that human actions are bringing the earth toward mass extinctions, and that political action is insufficient to bring about the wholesale changes needed."
Bron Taylor. Okay. He's a lefty. But, wow, that quote sure has ominous implications. Read on. This is obviously merely kindling.

    Taken at face value, most Americans agree with the "elves." A Los Angeles Times survey found that, even among conservative Republicans, two out of three people believe that the environment is more important than property rights, corporate profits or even creating jobs. Virtually everyone acknowledges that human-generated pollution is affecting the environment: only eight percent of Americans think that global warming (news - web sites) is a myth. (The United States produces more greenhouse gases, both per capita and overall, than any other nation, making it largely responsible for climate change.)
Okay, first, the grammar problem. Rall, learn to write. "Taken at first value, most people..." You can't refer to the last paragraph with that, even though I know you WANT to. Rules. Grammar has rules. Use them, or land yourself in a mire/muck-filled swamp of more frequent fiskings.

Second, the meat, or, really, the juice of the paragraph. Where the hell did that "most Americans agree with the elves (presumably ELF minions)" statement originate? Did a hair you shaved off your maw yesterday morning scream that unfounded assertion to you when you had writer's block? That's an unfounded claim. Dismissed.

"Two out of there people believe the environment is more important than property rights, corporate profits or even creating jobs." Apples and oranges. The environment is VERY important, yes. Citizen, do your part. You, too, Rall. If I catch you littering or not recycling everything but the cat litter, I'm sending out a press release.

Blah blah blah greenhouse blah, next.

    The environmental crisis is, hands down, the most important matter facing humanity today. Who cares about peace in the Middle East if the region is under water, stricken by famine or choked by dust storms? Weather systems are becoming increasingly violent and unpredictable, species are going extinct and virgin-growth forests are vanishing at an alarming rate. While smog has diminished somewhat in places like Denver and Los Angeles, air pollution is getting worse nationally. Ohio's EPA, for example, announced that 2002 was the most toxic summer on record in 14 years.
What music would you set this to? Darth Vader's Imperial March, or Ride of the Valkyries? Perhaps the Moldau to incite emotion, but you'd have to read the paragraph verrrry slowly, as the Moldau is 12 minutes long.

The MOST important problem is the environmental crisis. THE. *mutter* Hey, Rall. Ever heard of a terrorist? You claim your guy Bron knows about them. Perhaps you should ask for a definition. And put your hands down. You said hands down.

    The main reason:
Stop - I can't let him finish. I know! I know! It's GUNS. Oh, wrong answer.

    SUVs.

Dammit - I thought guns were always every problem. I need to read my manual on liberals again.

    What should we do about this long-ignored crisis? Writing letters to the editor and joining The Sierra Club (news - web sites) are admirable, but working within the system hasn't stopped the polluters.
Incite da troups! Call in the ELF (which should have its own theme song with sounds of raging fires mixed in - an eerie similarity to the KLF. Yeah. The ELF is gonna rock you).

Do you feel that blood pumping? Are you ready for the Stairmaster? Almost...
    Burning SUVs isn't the answer, argues the Sport Utility Vehicle Owners Association of America: "All told, the vandalism will not make any company think twice about producing more SUVs and other light trucks, nor will it shake the tremendous consumer confidence in the vehicles. Instead, the blaze destroyed the property of a small business owner, and put the lives of innocent civil servants in harm's way."
This is known as "giving the bad guys a chance to talk and show their idiocy." Rall, of course, feels quite the opposite. Burn someone else's private property in the name of the environment. After all, 2/3 of Americans believe that the environment is more important that private property. 2/3!

The quote is correct, though - burning a few SUVs won't stop production. Capitalism says: demand! And the rest of the quote is dead on: Destroyed the property of a small business owner, and put the lives of innocent civil servants in harm's way. Yes, indeed. And gave the media a frenzied time, yahoo!

    But SUVs are a national blight, burning 33 percent more gas, generating 30 percent more carbon monoxide and 75 percent more nitrogen oxide than regular cars. SUVs are so popular--they account for more than half of new car sales--that average fuel efficiency reversed a long-term trend by starting to drop beginning in 1987. Since 1990, SUVs have wasted an extra 70 billion gallons of gasoline, costing even more than the war on Iraq (news - web sites). They're the sole reason we dropped out of the Kyoto Protocol (news - web sites) to reduce greenhouse gases. SUVs have got to go.
Now, I'm no fan of the SUV monoliths; I'll not buy one. But they're here, and they're here to stay. "Wasted" an extra 708 billion gallons of gasoline, costing even more than the war on Iraq. What war on Iraq, Ted? Oh, you mean that little inconsequential thing underneath the downed hands. THAT war. k.

    The SUV phenomenon is the creation of an unholy alliance of Congress, Detroit automakers and consumers. The big four automakers have convinced even the legislators they don't own outright that eliminating SUVs would hurt the economy. SUV owners think the 9,000-pound leviathans make them safer than passenger cars (though studies have proven they're not), are better at handling snow (untrue), drive off-road (very few SUVs ever leave the pavement), offer extra room for big families (get a minivan instead, dope) and let them see ahead of smaller cars (while blocking the vehicles behind them). The Republican-controlled Congress has no intention of closing the fuel emissions loophole that lets SUVs pass as "light trucks." And the SUV craze is making Detroit more profitable than ever.
Unholy alliance. Hey, isn't that a Scorpions song? Yeah, it's offa Face the Heat; quit stealing the Scorpions' meme.

It's only the Detroit automakers, eh? So the Lexus, BMW, and Infiniti SUVs are white as lambs. And, wait, Mr. Rall, you're exempting minivans? I want them to be declared heathen, too. I mean, when I'm trying to turn left in my little red sports car and a minivan pulls astride me, I can't see over it, either. Waaa! Oh.

Damned those corporations profitting off of what consumers want. Damn them!

    That leaves consumers and dealers as the principal targets of radical environmentalists like the ELF. The idea is to make SUVs as unfashionable, and as scary to own, as fur became after the PETA-inspired spray-paint attacks of the '80s. In an ideal world, American consumers could be convinced to do the right thing through an appeal to logic with public service messages like the "What Would Jesus Drive?" TV campaign, but the kind of people who would buy a car that increases the risk to other motorists in an accident can't be reasoned with. They're selfish and stupid. It's unfortunate that drivers must worry that their SUVs are being targeted by insulting stickers and Molotov cocktails, but one thing's for sure: It couldn't be happening to a more deserving group of people.
Fur. Automobiles. Fur. Automobiles. Hmm. No. And, in an ideal world, American consumers would be YOUR SHEEP, Rall. Yours. Baa. You know what else people would do in an ideal world? No one would smoke or drink too much. No one would batter his or her spouse. People wouldn't kill each other. There'd be no more hunger (k, time to cue the music). There'd be no war. People would't be obese.

Sorry, bucko. No ideal world. Oh, but those who lean so far left they have constant backaches think it'll happen if we just. legislate. enough.

(Oh, and Mom, thanks for reading - I know you're the only one who made it this far.)

4) Now, is your blood shakin', baby? You're already sweating. It's time to run/walk/Stairmaster/elliptical/cycle off that adrenaline. And the good news, puppet Rall will be back another day to inspire you yet again!

5) After your workout, submit your Rall fisk to Venemous Kate for her snarky snark snark.

Patented. Proven.

hln



Adult Happy Meal

Yeah, really, according to today's news:

    CHICAGO — McDonald's Corp. (MCD) has enlisted the aid of Oprah Winfrey's personal trainer to promote an adult version of the Happy Meal (search), the fast-food giant's latest effort to offer healthier products.

    Instead of Happy Meal standards like a burger and a toy, the new Go Active Meal (search) will include a salad, an exercise booklet and a pedometer meant to encourage walking.
Wow, you mean instead of a salad I can order off the menu, I can get it with gadgets? I think I'd prefer the flexible Grimace if there're going to be gadgets.

hln



  

Tuesday, September 16, 2003


Chicken on the Barbie

Following up on my post Not Surprising about Barbie, the Evil Jewess Infidel doll (indeed!), I found that Cox and Forkum's cartoon for today hits the spot.

Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice
Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice
Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice

(Very...hypnotic).

Link via dcthornton.com.

hln



Brrrrrr

The Meatriarchy would be serving up some frozen burgers if the blog were based outta Calgary.

Brrrrrrrrrr!.

hln



Party!

Throw a party and invite the Senate. Get them all drunk and make them admit their worth. What do you get?

You get this, though I bet it was compiled by more scientific/valid means than a drunken survey.

But you get my point.

Not what you would expect, eh? Still, would be interesting to see if just a few skew the whole thing. Naaaaaa - more fun this way.

hln



  

Monday, September 15, 2003


Filthy Lie #4

This is disgusting, disheartening, and wrong. I caught Glenn Reynolds going through my TRASH out back.

No, really, I did. I was suspicious when I heard a familiar bell, and I looked out my back window in my kitchen toward the patio, and there he was! The small child's bike was parked against my fence. Glenn had set the bags of used cat litter (yes, Mom, I edited that for you) aside and was sifting through my garbage, separating the chicken bones from the paper. He had a DOG with him; said pooch was tied to the fence by the bike.

"WHATEVER ARE YOU DOING?!?" shouted I. Glenn looked up at me, miffed. "Why, I'm looking for all of your private information so that I can assume your identity." Shocked, appalled, and mildly frightened, I grabbed a Cutco kitchen knife, stormed out the screen door, and waved the weapon at Reynolds. "Out, and away!" I shouted. "And leave the dog if you know what's good for you." He did not budge. At the top of my lungs, I began to sing Copacabana, by Barry Manilow.

Reynolds screeched and pedalled away, his pockets full of paper. He was afraid of my skill with a chopping knife, perhaps. Doubtful, I think it was the word "Lola." Good thing to know. Oh, and luckily, I shred all of my paper, so my identity is safe.

When Brian arrived home, I told him of the day's drama. He frowned, and, in typical Brianesque fashion, became immediately concerned. "Heather," he said. "They can reconstruct those documents even if they've been shredded." All was quiet for a moment. I mentioned then that all that should be in the garbage for this week are a bunch of cash receipts for the grocery. All was well, except I felt I'd better tell him about the dog...

A week later, after perfecting his plotted science, Brian brought this proposal to me and to the world, after first testing it on himself and our animals. You see, Alliance Members, we can keep our secrets from the evil one.

Let a lesson be learned. Destroy your vital secrets, and use your body (and those of others) as weapons.

Down at the Copa, Copacabaaaaaaaaana...

hln



Glenn Reynolds' Favorite Song

Atomic Dog, by George Clinton.

    Why must I feel like that
    Why must I chase the cat
    Nothin' but the dog in me

    Do the dogcatcher, dogcatcher
    Do the dogcatcher
    Do the dogcatcher, dogcatcher
    Do the dogcatcher

    Do the dogcatcher, baby, do the dogcatcher
    Ooh
Ooh!

hln



Nigerian E-mail Conference!

My friend Tim forwarded me the link to this. It's good lunchtime snickering.

hln



  

Sunday, September 14, 2003


Brian's a Goof

The Shidoshi of Paranoia Speaks about Ingestion, and, well, you'd better listen.

hln



Tracking Activity

While I was looking for information on Missouri's State Government page about the override of governor's veto of the Concealed Gun bill, I stumbled across this.

Why not? The dates work - just started, so I signed myself up. I went for intermediate because I found this on Thursday, and, well, with the foot issue, I didn't think I could get five days of cardio in this week. I was right. Seems days are more important than total time. So, I've met my goals this week for that - nothing out of the ordinary.

Tonight I went looking for the national version, The President's Challenge. Turns out, this is even easier because it'll count EVERYTHING I do, from weight training to my weekly volleyball to cycling to even STRETCHING. I filled in my week's worth of info, and I'm 11% to my first goal. This wasn't even a very active week for me.

Why do this? Well, remember those obnoxious physical fitness tests we all had to take as kids? I was HORRIBLE at those. Horrid. Grace, balance, and strength have finally appeared in my life, and, dammit, I want a piece of paper for my efforts. I used to HATE those tests. Here's what I remember.

1) The shuttle run. Shudder. We used to have to drop and carry erasers for this test. I was never. fast. enough. (I was 5' 6" when I was 11 - oversized, indeed).

2) The bent-arm hang. Okay - see #1. You know who excelled at this? Those damned ectomorphs who still weighed 75 pounds. It's much simpler to suspend 75 pounds in the air than 120 or 130 (not sure what I weighed in 6th grade - was slightly chubby but not bad) for a period of time. This is at a time before any of us was actively strength training, so, as you can guess, this was not something at which I excelled either. Then, at any rate.

3) Running the dreaded mile. My best mile time was 8:07. This was my freshman year in high school, and I had been running for a few months before I attempted this. Not terifficly fast.

4) 50-yard dash. See #1. Heather never could sprint. Still can't.

But the one thing I learned I can do is train. With weights. Heavy and hard. I learned this in high school, actually, that same class where I ran the 8:07 mile. And, my skill has gone up some in adulthood when most of these lean/mean kids are now carrying some extra poundage and/or have given up on "play" because they are adults.

So, you see, it's all fun and games now.

hln



Free Will - My First Visit

I cracked up at the first post I read.

Guess I'll keep reading.

hln



Do That Again, Bow Bow Bow

Hans responds!

This is about NICOWater, and even if he thinks it'd be a good study aid, I'd still run far, far away (while thoroughly encouraging others to feed this particular addiction). Then again, I eschew caffeine, too :)

hln