Sunday, September 30, 2007

Pick #44

Calexico - Not Even Stevie Nicks from the album A Feast of Wire

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Triathlon Club

So, I officially joined the FSU triathlon club. They have a workout every day (actually 2 on Wednesdays). There's something like 70 members (I think). They do a service project every semester. I'm going to say (without proof) that they're the most active club on campus...I mean, who else convenes daily (even on weekends)?

They put together a training schedule to get as many people as possible to go to collegiate nationals this year. When you show up to a workout, there's an officer there who usually has some sort of structure for that day. For me it's nice for swimming since I have no idea what I'm doing. It's also helpful to have somebody next to you to push you to go faster.

The club is going to subsidize race entry fees in order to encourage people to race! I'm doing the Emerald Coast sprint triathlon with them on October 13 in Panama City. Should be a good time. Hopefully I'll have a little bit of speed in my step for the run...hard to do when you're training for a marathon.

Tomorrow, we're going to bike to Wakulla Springs from the St. Marks trailhead, then do an open water swim. Pretty sweet. It's interesting how easy it has been for me to adapt to multi-sport from my running background. After I bought the bike, the rest just fell into place. The other members of the triathlon club (I call it "the team" even though it's not technically a team) have been good motivation and I hope that I will reciprocate some of that back toward them. It is nice to have a team again.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Publix Weekly Ad

For those of you who live near a Publix, did you know that they put their weekly ad online? Simply go to their website and click the "weekly ad" link at the bottom of the page. You'll probably have to type in your zip code if you've never done it before. It will tell you the specials for that week. A new flyer comes out on Thursdays and it is good until the following Wednesday. I use it every week to determine what's not on my list that I should buy.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

My Spanish Joke

So, I made up a joke in Spanish today then realized that it doesn't work. Here's the joke:

¿Cuál país suramerícano es lo más chévere? ... ParaGUAY

Then I realized that it doesn't work...why? Because UruGUAY is also in south america...

If only the prefix para- meant "even more so than uru-" then this joke would still work. Oh well, maybe I'll get 'em next time.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

the "blog" of "unnecessary" quotation marks

go to for a hilarious blog on misuse of quotation marks. This blog has good pictures to put things in context.

props go to Jensen for introducing me to this site.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Tortilla Española

Decidí que debo cocinar una tortilla española. Busque recetas en la red y encontré esta:

Pelamos lavamos y cortamos las patatas en cuadritos pequeños y las salamos. Pelamos y cortamos en juliana la cebolla.
Ponemos al fuego una sartén honda con abundante aceite de oliva y cuando esté caliente, echamos las patatas y la cebolla.

Mantenemos el fuego no muy fuerte, para que las patatas y la cebolla se cuezan en el aceite. Cuando estén bien blandas y ligeramente doradas, las sacamos de la sartén y escurrimos el aceite.

En un bol batimos los huevos hasta conseguir una buena mezcla. Echamos entonces las patatas y la cebolla sobre los huevos batidos y removemos bien para que quede todo mezclado y rectificamos de sal.

Poner al fuego una sartén honda antiadherente, echamos dos cucharadas de aceite de oliva y cuando esté caliente, movemos la sartén para que quede bien aceitado el fondo. Entonces echamos la mezcla de huevos, patatas y cebolla y la extendemos bien. Bajamos el fuego y movemos la sartén con movimientos circulares para que la tortilla se mueva dentro y no se pegue. Dejamos cocer hasta que se vea que empieza a hervir la mezcla.

Damos la vuelta a la tortilla poniendo un plato llano encima de la sartén, a modo de tapadera, y girando la sartén sobre el plato. Ahora echaremos de nuevo la tortilla, dejándola resbalar cuidadosamente, desde el plato a la sartén.

Movemos de nuevo con movimientos circulares la sartén y la dejamos cocer entre 2 y 3 minutos, dependiendo del gusto de los comensales.
Apartamos y servimos en una fuente. Podemos servirla fría o caliente.

Pasaron unos 75 minutos en cocinar esto. La receta dice que la cocina dura 20 min, pero no sé como. Tiene un buen sabor no muy fuerte. Aunque hay una gran cantidad de ingredientes, no es tan grande al cabo de cocinarla.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Pick #43

Sister Hazel - Look to the Children

Hit by a Car

Today, I took a trip by car to return my keg/tap, get a new mount for my bike headlight (replaced free of charge by the good fellas at University them at 222-1665), and pick up some eggs to make tortilla española. When I got home, I went to put my new headlight (he just gave me a whole new package) on the new mount on my bike. The light was broken. Brand new out of the package. WTF?

So, I decide to get on my bike and ride down there. On the way down Ocala, dude's inching out of the shopping center on the corner of TN and there's oncoming traffic blocking his exit. I cross in front of him. He decides to go with me still in front of him. Hit my bike's rear end, I thought it hit the frame and it nudged a bit of my left calf muscle. The fucker didn't even stop! Luckily, I wasn't hurt. Got back on my bike and rode to the bike shop. Got a new headlight (for some reason, my old one wasn't working was weird).

If I think that there's a chance that a driver might not see me or might pull out as I'm trying to cross paths, I'll usually go behind them like I do when I'm running. I really thought I'd be fine crossing. See whatcha get for thinkin'? Lucky for me it was super-low-speed and all that got hurt was the rack on the back of my bike (which John @ University Cycles bent back into shape for me).

Watch out for drivers. Always wear a helmet.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Rosetta Stone

I ordered Level 1 Swahili last night through the Rosetta Stone website. A simple Google search for a coupon resulted in getting $20 off. I hope to use it for at least a half hour a day, 4 days a week. Nick just got his Level 1 French program in the mail earlier this week. It's pretty cool. I also have a book that can teach me the things you don't necessarily pick up from looking at pictures and the like, such as: noun classes and verb conjugations (it's hard to represent first person in a picture).

Friday, September 21, 2007

Friday is Tri-Day

Today I went to the swim workout at 11:15, cut it off a few minutes early to go sign up for spinning @ 12:30 (I got the last spot on the waiting list). Turns out that I got in and I was the only guy in the class. Definitely different than riding a real bike...pros and cons. Then we did 7 minutes of abs (what about when someone comes out with 6 minute abs?). I maxed out the good girl machine at the gym! Met some girl who's going to join the Tri club. Tonight I did a fartlek run with 30 seconds on and a minute off for 4 miles.

Let me beef for a minute about spinning...first of all, you don't go anywhere! Second, you don't know how fast you're going. On the up-side, the shifting is really smooth. Third, music too loud. Last and probably most important: they don't have cut-outs in the seats, which means it hurts your taint after sitting there for too long. Sometimes I wanted to stand up and pedal for some pressure relief, but I didn't want to get kicked out.

I think that I'm going to try to get in a workout in all 3 disciplines on Fridays. For the swim, I'm at the mercy of Dan's workout schedule. If I make it into the spin class, then I'll do whatever they do...if not, then I'll come home and do a bike-run combo with a short transition time.

A Winter Chill

The last couple days have seen low temperatures in the high 60°s. I was actually chilly on the first part of my bike ride to school today. There's a definite undertone of a chill in the warm, moist air. It's interesting how just a little hint of relief makes all the heat seem so substantially reduced.

I'm not sure what causes this barely perceptible difference in the air. You just know that the chill is there. I think of it as scattered pockets of molecules with lower kinetic energy..maybe it's actually a smell that triggers the colder feeling. Who knows? Anyway, I'm not looking forward to the day I have to put on boots and a jacket to ride to school.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Monday, September 17, 2007

Flying the Confederate Flag

What do you think about flying the confederate flag? The Confederacy actually had ass-loads of different flags. What we think of as THE Confederate Flag is a modern combination of the CSA's Battle Flag's colors with the Second Navy Jack's design. Actual historical flags of the CSA have become more obscure. Still, this flag arouses strong feelings in many people.

Rednecks think that the flag represents their heritage and they should be allowed to fly it freely. It is displayed anywhere from a front porch to a vehicle to someone's clothing or even tattoos. It is a symbol of pride to which they have a birthright.

In general, hippies and blacks are opposed to the flying of the confederate flag. They think that it recalls an era of slavery and oppression of minorities by the white man. ¿The past should be forgotten and put behind us?

If people are opposed to it based on the atrocities committed by the government represented by the flag, then they should start to think about what the USA has done under its current flag...

Both sides refuse to see the validity of the other side's argument. I heard a pretty original response from Whitney's Jason. He says that he doesn't like it because it represents treason against the USA. I think that most people's opinions are valid. You have the right to free speech and should be able to fly your own flag if you damn well please. However, your rights stop where they start to encroach on those of others. BUT, you do NOT have the right to not be offended. As for flying by governments, I guess that's something that maybe should come down to a vote.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Pick #42

Juan Luis Guerra - Frío frío

Janny burned me a disc with this song on it. I liked it a lot and started listening to it often. I sang this song at a local karaoke bar in Madrid (not in the touristy part of town). Not only can I not sing, but I butchered a beautiful song...but I learned all the lyrics by reading them on the screen.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Ease of Use v. Control

It seems that in order to make something easier to use, the user must have less control over that something. For example:

automatic v. manual transmission cars
AOL v. Firefox
zTree v. Java (I've never programmed in Java, but I'm pretty sure this is true)
Nintendo (8-bit) v. X-Box (it's a stretch)

I wonder if there's some inherent property of simplification that requires removal of control...any thoughts?

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Meet New People

Friday, it's going down...a "meet new people" party @ my place. Even if you know people, it's guaranteed that you'll meet someone new here. Show up, Friday after 10. Keg of Killians.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Things to do Before I Die

I have a running list of things I want to do while I can do them. Here is a tentative list. I'm working on the 3rd language thing (kind of slowly aka "at my own pace" right now) and even slower at the piano thing. I'm training for the Tallahassee marathon, which is not a qualifier for Boston, but it's a step in the right direction. Motorcycle should be quick. I plan to knock out parasailing later this semester.

In no particular order:
learn to wallflip
run the boston marathon
learn to ride a horse
learn to ride a motorcycle
learn a 3rd language
learn the piano
spend a day in outer space

Let me know if you have any suggestions (preferably ones you know that I might add myself but didn't...don't say "oh, you should put bungee jumping on there").

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Pick #41

Tim McGraw - Live Like You Were Dying

Owe man, would I do some of that stuff...I don't know about the bull riding, but why not give it a shot. I think I would go to Macchu Picchu and maybe dive the Great Barrier Reef. Deffly skydiving again.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Take Away

There is (supposedly) a parlor game called Take Away (TA). It goes like this: there are 21 pennies on a table and 2 players who alternate in taking a turn. During a turn, each player may remove 1,2, or 3 pennies. The loser is the one who removes the last penny. I was thinking about this game and how one would go about winning it. Obviously, you want to leave your opponent with the last penny (because if there are 2 left (or 3 or 4), then they will just leave you with the last penny.

As I was reading in my Jehle & Reny text, the second player should always win the game (kind of like tic-tac-toe...except that there IS a winner)...From my above logic, it would be good to leave your opponent with 5 pennies when they make their move, because then, no matter what they do, you can leave only one after your move. J&R call 5 a "losing position." In fact, they extend this to say that the following are losing positions: 1,5,9,13,17,21...all others are winning positions. So, be careful of just taking away 3 at the beginning to get the game over fast, because even if you're the second player, you could lose...player one takes 3, you take 3, he takes only 2, then you are in a losing position!

I thought that it was cool that I thought about the structure of the game using backward induction without even realizing what I was doing until later on.

Friday, September 7, 2007

The Liberties of Relationships

One measure of the degree of "closeness" of a relationship can be summarized by the number and types of liberties afforded to the parties engaged in the relationship.

For starters, when you meet someone in a higher position than yourself within the same social hierarchy (for instance, student meets teacher), it's common for the student to address the teacher as Mrs. ____ or Dr. _____. After a comfortable relationship has been forged, maybe the student takes the liberty of calling the professor by their first name (or a title, such as "coach").

Another example: it's alright to make fun of personal shortcomings in friends, but not in random strangers. The closer the friend, the more you can say about them without getting your ass kicked. You can also take the liberty of asking progressively larger favors to progressively closer friends. This leads to my "dispose of a body" test of friendship. Ask yourself how many of your friends would unquestioningly help you dispose of a body if you really needed their help. How many of your friends would you help out?

With other types of relationships, there may be physical liberties. For example, I'm a very huggable person...but I won't let someone I don't know give me a hug. That's a liberty reserved for friends/family. I'm sure you can fill in the blank with girlfriends, etc. The closer you are to a significant other, the more you get away with, both physically and verbally (yes, your butt DOES look big).

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Alone After the Ballgame

I think that tonight is the first time that I've left the field alone after a ball game. When I was younger, my parents were always there. When I was in college, my room-/team-mates were there. Tonight I left alone and it was a weird feeling. Even though I haven't played in about 3 years, it's weird to play a team sport then be an individual again right after it ends. I've never had that feeling with races (which I go to/leave from alone all the time). Weird.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Softball & Accountability

I'm playing intramural softball now. Our first practice was today and our first game is tomorrow. Although we won't be practicing much, I think that there's still enough incentive to be halfway serious about the games out of respect for my teammates. I guess it's hard to play softball without a team...but you can run with or without a team.

And when I run without a team, I feel that it's not as bad if I slack because I'm not letting my teammates down. Having somebody else there for your practices/workouts holds you more accountable. This effect isn't constrained to the realm of sports, either. I have never done theater, but I think that this applies. If you stretch your imagination, it could work with grades in school (who is your team? the people in your study group.).

Even though I think I'm a fairly self-motivated person, having others to let down is an incentive to do it right. So, if you're slacking, try getting someone else (who you care about) to hold you accountable.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Pick #40

Jayhawks - Save it for a Rainy Day

from the album Rainy Day Music. Their first song that caught my attention was Tailspin, but I think I like this one better.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Qué Servicio

escrito el 23 de Mayo de 2005 a las 0748h en mi cama del hotel en Guayaquil.

Ayer fuimos al parque nacional de historia y dejé mi camera en el hotel. ¡Qué estupido! Robaré fotos de otros. Después, caminabamos por Las Peñas y comimos allí. Compré un gorro tonto para Sarah.
La parte más interesante de ayer fue la cena...un hombre del hotel vinió a nuestra habitación, cojió el dinero y regresó en unos 25 minutos con Pizza Hut. Nos obtuvo un descuento de $5 y por eso le di una propina de $5. ¡Lo invitamos por dentro para tomar un traigo [sic] y él lo hizo! Esta mañana, el mismo hombre fue para comprarme agua sin gas. ¡Qué servicio!
Ahora es seguramente la duración más larga en que no me he afeitado. Creo que puedo pasar las 5 semanas (o menos) sin afeitarme por un "premio" de Sarah...aunque es una sorpresa.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Triple Overtime

I must concede defeat to Danielle. She beat me tonight in triple overtime in beerpong. Although I would have won the first round (and the 2nd overtime) by Sean' s rules, we had to play house rules; and being her place, she had the house-rules-advantage.

After we had been playing for a little while (Danielle & Jack were up by 8 games by the time Nick got me there from the Trophy Wifes concert...which kicked ass), Danielle and I decided to go one on one. I closed out the game, but she got redemption and hit the cup. Events proceeded and we got to triple overtime. I had her down to one cup. She sunk both of my remaining cups (they play that if I win the regular game, but she makes all the redemption cups, then we go into overtime with 3 cups). So, she got the balls back and I get no redemption. High five, Danielle. I've never played a closer game in my life.