Friday, January 02, 2004

Not a New Year's Resolution

For years (since 1984, in fact) I have avoided running due to concerns about my knees. I have had no trouble biking or even playing hockey as these activities create little in the way of stress on the knees.

But Ame loves to run and I wanted to add another thing that we could do together despite our incongruous schedules, so I decided I would run. She reserved our place in a half-marathon, so I was committed.

I tried running just once, about two years ago. I tagged along with Ame for a job with her in the park. I lasted about a quarter mile before my lungs were screaming and my legs tightening. I was also running in flip-flops- you know, for maximum comfort.

The training began this week, with a trip to the mall. I finally bought a pair of decent running shoes, Nike Shox, that have crazy exaggerated springs in the heels. They felt cushy and gave good support.

Run #1: I walked a half mile to Bishop Chatard High School, who has a dilapidated cinder track. No way am I running on paved surfaces. I walked a mile around the track for additional warm-up, and then I began my run. Ame timed my quarter mile, which was all I could do before my calves cramped up miserably. Ame commended me on my great time of 2:19. I was horrified! She tried to cheer me up by pointing out that I would get under a ten minute mile. Hell- I can walk a mile in less than fifteen! On the upside, my lungs were doing great, thanks to hockey.

Run #2: I managed a full half mile! Better than that, I timed my quarter at 1:50, and didn’t cramp up. I know that this doesn’t mean that I am now under eight minutes for the mile. After all, I still haven’t run a mile.

Run #3: I timed my half mile at 3:50. Again, it was all I ran, but I was very enthused for the time. I was expecting about 4:15. This is all good, but my next three runs will be about hitting the miracle mile, which I have not achieved since I was a sophomore in high school. Ame already can run 4 miles without a huge amount of effort, so I have a lot of catching up to do.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003

More Boortz, LP Convention

The January 2004 LP News hit my mailbox today, and from it sprung an insert touting the 2004 National Convention.

Anti-Boortz fanatics will be sad to note that he was touted on Page 3 with a photo and bio, but glad that he wasn't hailed above the fold on Page 1. That space of honor was reserved for that luminary and paragon of pro-liberty thinking, Jimmy Vaughn... the blues guitarist.

The anti-Boortz crowd should be plenty busy, though. The Convention will not only be hosting Neal, but two others equally objectionable to libertarian purists. Bootz is objectionable due to his pro-war position. The other two are Congressman Ron Paul- a REPUBLICAN from Texas, and pro-life at that; and Carl Milsted, Jr. PhD, also known as "The Incrementalist".

How infuriating is this! How DARE the LP host these heretical deviants?! Pro-war? Pro-life? These things are inherently at odds with (hum the Battle Hymn of the Republic) libertarian philosophy! An incrementalist? It's all or nothing, damn it! It's destination, not direction. If it need be nothing instead of all, then I'll take it and wrap myself in the comfort of my righteousness!!!

I am so looking forward to this Convention. I can't wait to shed the Losertarians who object to the inclusion of voices that flow from the same principles to conclusions that differ slightly from theirs.

The irony here is that the purists have been loudly anti-Boortz, but tend to hail Ron Paul as a returning hero every time he takes the floor. I admire Paul a great deal, as I do Boortz, but what I ask of the purists is that they be what they claim they are- consistent. If you're going to boot Boortz, then boot Paul, and Milsted too. Then rid your bookshelves of all Milton Friedman and Ayn Rand and a hundred others.

Sunday, December 28, 2003

Help Not Wanted?

Here's intense hatred for you: Iran suffers a catastrophic earthquake with at least 20,000 dead. Israel offers help. Iran refuses! Per a spokesman for Iran's Interior Ministry,

"The Islamic Republic of Iran accepts all kinds of humanitarian aid from all countries and international organizations with the exception of the Zionist regime".

Incredible. 'We'd rather all sink into the earth than take your stinkin' help!'

I found this item on the Shark Blog, which I frequently read. Thanks to the Shark!

I found no mention of this offer-refusal in my local media, or in the national stuff I sometimes browse. The AP story in the Indy Star mentions the assistance provided by the US, names others, such as the Swiss, British, Russians, and naturally, the UN.

Of course, this is why I frequently scan blogs, and why I only sometimes browse the rest.

Iran's hatred for Israel is hard for me to comprehend. The US named Iran as part of the Axis of Evil, and yet, American aid is good enough to accept.
Checking the Stats

This blog offers me a number of tools to see what draws people to read it. Look for the little square at the left of the page, and you can see what I check on every so often.

I had a lot of fun observing certain entries around the elections in November. Dean Barkley's mayoral run in Carmel brought a lot of hits to the blog. I was amused to see a certain Indy Star reporter's name on the hit list. My guess was that he did a Google search on himself. I'm sure he was pleased with the results. Har.

One thing I noticed falls into the Possible Foregone Conclusion department. I had a very large number of hits after people did Google searches on "Ceaucescu Execution", and variations thereof, immediately after the capture of Saddam Hussein. Ironically, I had linked the release of Uday and Qusay Hussein's autopsy photos with the release of the video of the Ceaucescu executions with the explanation of proof, along with the treatment of Mussolini.

I have not really made an effort to promote the blog, so the hit numbers are still pretty low. That's okay. I'm enjoying watching people discover the blog for their own reasons. It is gratifying to see some of you come back for more. Thanks!