Bones is one of the better shows on TV right now, but this short little clip from S10E08 made me quite literally laugh out loud. Just a wonderful bit of silliness.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve started trying to pay more attention to my general health. Part of that process last year was starting to track my exercise and eating habits–and in the case of exercise, forming some habits to be tracked. Historically, I tended to think of myself as someone who didn’t really exercise much, but when I think back on how I used to spend my time–clubbing around three nights a week (which, for me, involves much more actual dancing than sitting/standing around and drinking), walking a lot (I didn’t have a car while living in Seattle, and walked up and down hill between downtown and Capitol Hill daily), and working for print shops (which, while not strictly “physical labor” jobs, did involve a lot of moving cases of paper around and being on my feet most of my time)–it’s pretty obvious that I was getting a fair amount of regular exercise just through my normal routine. Certainly much more than I tend to now, when my daily routine involves driving back and forth to work and spending my day sitting at a desk.
While tracking my eating habits didn’t carry on terribly long, I was better about keeping up a semi-regular mild exercise routine for most of the year. Unfortunately, that ended up falling apart mid-November, right about midway through my first quarter pulling double duty as a full-time employee and full-time master’s student.
Last January, I weighed a little above 170 lbs., and set an arbitrary goal of just dropping down to 165. This was more to just have something to put into the app I was using than an actual goal, as I didn’t really feel I needed to lose weight, I just wanted to start paying more attention to actively exercising and taking care of myself (and hey, if I ended up toning up a bit in the process, so much the better). Over the course of the year, I actually ended up dropping down to 158 before starting to come back up again (which I believe is a combination of putting on some muscle mass and having to switch to a new scale which seems to read a bit higher than the last one did…too bad the last one broke when I got on it one morning).
Right now, I’m right about back where I was at the beginning of last year, sitting at 172.2. So as I get the process going again, I’m keeping that “goal” of 165, but once again, that’s more just to have a value in that field in the app. My only real plan is to get back into the habit of exercising regularly.
To that end, I’m using three apps to help track my stats (and as is pretty normal in these days of social everything, two of them allow me to connect with friends, so I suppose, if I know you and you want to be a long-distance, social-media pseudo-exercise buddy, feel free to add me as a friend). I’m set up with LoseIt! to track food and weight, RunKeeper to track my exercise (walking, riding, elliptical, etc.–in the words of Chris Knight, I only run when chased), and I’m using the Gorilla Workout app as a simple home-based exercise regimen. I actually started the Gorilla workouts in October, but didn’t quite make it through all of Level 1 before my mid-November slump hit, so I’ve just started that over from the beginning again.
So, that’s it for now. Just tossing this out there to give myself a little more accountability as I get going on this project again. As I’m about to start another quarter of school, I’m hoping I’ll be able to get through to spring break without letting the exercise fall by the wayside again.
- 640×1136 (iPhone 5s)
- 2,048×1,536 (iPad Air 2)
- 5120×2880 (iMac with Retina Display)
Yes, I make this joke somewhat annually. But…it amuses me, so I’ll probably continue to do so. One of these days I should dig back through prior years to figure out where I’ve posted this (blog, Facebook, Twitter) and see how my resolutions have changed over time.
(This was originally published on Facebook a few days ago in a slightly shorter form.)
Thanks to the world’s weirdest advertising campaign, we watched a dumb comedy that we’d otherwise have had no interest in. And in the end? Yes, dumb, but we’ve definitely seen far worse, and there were some laughs to be had (bracketed by moments of pushing gags too far, but then, we were expecting that). It was an acceptably amusing way to spend an hour and a half, leaving us neither enriched nor regretting the experience. It didn’t suck.
One of my favorite gags was one of the more subtle ones (which is likely why this genre of comedy isn’t my usual thing, as subtlety doesn’t seem to be a major concern most of the time): the titular interview being watched by a North Korean guard on a PC running Windows 3.1.
I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man’s freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a “more convenient season.” Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection.
This just floated across my Facebook feed, and seemed appropriate for the season. Happymerry Holidayschristmaskwanzaasolsticenewyear!
WordPress has gotten, really, _really_ slow for me on this site, both on the outward-facing public side, and on the backend. I’m wondering if it might be a side effect of years and years of blogging (building up a total of almost 6,500 posts and almost 13,000 comments), plus trying various plugins here and there that probably often added extra fields to the database. I’m very tempted to do a full nuke-and-pave, exporting all the entries, building a brand-new WordPress install from the ground up, and then re-importing everything, but I worry about breaking all sorts of links (incoming, internal, and images) that I’d likely never have time to go back through and fix. At what point does the hassle of rebuilding stop outweighing the annoyance of a slow website?
Filed under “yes, even I can have unpopular opinions”: I’m very concerned about where the money to fund I-1351’s directives is going to come from. We live in a state where voters refuse to put money into the system (we couldn’t even pass a minuscule sales tax on candy bars and soda to fund various services), but demand that the system provide services that cost money. This is going to cost billions in hiring teachers, constructing classrooms, and lots of other associated costs, and we have no idea where that money is going to come from (but we’re by-golly determined not to pay for it ourselves!).
And according to this article (by fivethirtyeight, which started as a political statistical analysis site and has branched out into applying statistical analyses to all sorts of other things), it’s really not even clear that smaller class sizes will make that much of a difference compared to other possible expenditures such as hiring/training better teachers, giving raises, or putting money into new/better texts, supplies, and technology.
Class-size reductions make sense intuitively — in smaller classes, kids get more attention, distractions are reduced and working conditions are improved. Many economists and education policy experts say, though, that this isn’t a case where the common-sense fix is guaranteed to be the best fix. Many of the studies on class size are inconclusive, and even those who support cutting class size in theory are dubious about whether I-1351 is the best or most cost-effective way to improve public education in Washington.
[…] Attempts to implement large-scale class-reduction policies have yielded less encouraging results. In 2002, Florida voters approved a ballot initiative like I-1351 that amended the state constitution to include caps on class sizes in all grades. An analysis of data from Florida conducted by Matt Chingos, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Center for Education Policy found no differences between students who were new to a small classroom and those who had already been in one.
[…] “Reducing class size is one of the most expensive things you can do in education,” Chingos said. “Even if it does have a substantial positive effect, it still might not be the best use of limited resources.” He said that in some cases, raising teacher salaries could be a more effective use of funds. “Really the lesson is that you want to build in flexibility,” he said. “Different school districts have different needs. It’s very far from one-size-fits-all.”
Eric Hanushek, an economist at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, said that I-1351 could have the unintended effect of reducing teacher quality. “This isn’t about hiring high-quality teachers, it’s about hiring more teachers, and that means we’re going to see a lot more inexperienced teachers in the classroom,” he said.
Some education advocates in Washington state are concerned that the class-size mandate will siphon funds from other policies. […] Practically speaking, the state government has only so much money to spend. I-1351’s biggest flaw might be its failure to acknowledge this reality.
At this point, I (and many other people I talk to in higher education) are very worried that without a funding source, the state is going to end up pulling even more money out of the already hard-hit higher education system, damaging it further in the name of improving the K-12 education system.
Everyone agrees that better education — across the board — is important. But, jeez. It’s not magic. There needs to be a way to pay for it.
So, the first full trailer (following the teaser from a couple months ago that was almost entirely clips from prior Pixar films) for Pixar’s next film showed up today. I’d been cautiously optimistic about this one, hoping for a change from the past, but after watching the trailer…I have concerns.
On the pro side, the main character is a little girl, something that’s been lacking in Pixar films until now, and the general concept looks like a very interesting one.
However, some things jumped out at me.
Stereotypes: Mom is caring, nurturing and interested in her daughter’s day, while dad is absentmindedly dreaming about sports and has to be prompted to show interest in his daughter. When prompted to actually interact with his family, his first thoughts are right in line with very typical male stereotypes: my wife wants my attention, so I must be in trouble; did I forget the garbage or leave the toilet seat up?
This leads directly to what to me is problematic language: “What is it, woman?!” Just…ugh.
Odd choices: When the promo material released so far highlighted the emotion characters inside the girl’s head, there was a nice 3-to-2 mix of feminine to masculine characters. However, all of the mom’s emotion characters are definitely feminine, and the dad’s are definitely all masculinized (with pornstaches, no less). Why do their characters get uniformly gendered while the girl’s are a mix? I suppose it could be commentary on gender being still somewhat unformed in a pre-pubescent child and settling later in life, but that seems a bit much to expect of a Pixar film.
I had hopes, Pixar, and they weren’t even that high. And yet, I don’t think you’re living up to them.
Lo-Fidelity All Stars’ “Battle Flag” is one of the few times when I’ve heard a group release a de-profanitized radio-friendly edit of a track that I actually prefer to the original uncensored version. Not that I have any problems with the uncensored version, but rather than simply mask out the profanity with silence, beeps, or word substitutions, they use a drawn-out stutter effect on the words immediately preceding or following the censored word. Not only is it a neat sounding effect on its own, but it’s an effect that they use elsewhere in the song as well, so it doesn’t stick out as much due to only appearing when they’re removing words.
Plus, it’s a pretty cool song, whichever version pops up. Good sound, heavy beats, some organ riffing, and a nice slow-ish tempo that works really well on a dance floor.
For comparison purposes…